HomeUncategorized2/6 News Roundup & Open Thread – Bernie Sanders’ SOTU Response, Behind the Green New Deal’s Meteoric Rise & More

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By increasing the federal minimum wage over the next five years, the Raise the Wage Act of 2019 would boost the incomes and improve the lives of an estimated 40 million Americans, according to an analysis out Tuesday from the Economic Policy Institute (EPI).

Introduced last month by Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) and Rep. Bobby Scott (D-Va.), the bill would raise the federal hourly minimum wage from $7.25—which Sanders calls “a starvation wage”—to a living wage of $15 by 2024. It would also require employees to pay the new minimum to tipped workers, who currently can make as little as $2.31 an hour.


Coming on the heels of her breaking with all the other Dem Presidential possibilities to vote for the Republican bill in favor of staying put in Syria and Afghanistan and also making support of BDS illegal. Now this one is definitely over in that blue dog/New Dem lane


Minnesota Democratic Sen. Amy Klobuchar Tuesday night said she will announce whether she is running for president in 2020 during an event this coming Sunday.

In an interview with Rachel Maddow on MSNBC following President Donald Trump’s State of the Union address, Klobuchar invited supporters to Minneapolis to hear her decision.


Sounds like sensible ideas to me


Rep. Ocasio-Cortez tweeted out a list of recommendations she’d given to teens at a school assembly on Monday. The list includes skipping meat and “incorporating thrift, consignment & second-hand clothes in your wardrobe”:

Yesterday I visited a school assembly w/ teens in Queens. One of them asked, “What can WE do to combat climate change?” 2 recs: – Skip disposable razors+switch to safety razors – Give your tummy a break! Skip meat/dairy for a meal (easiest is bfast, I do banana & peanut butter)

My other tips: – Start incorporating thrift, consignment & second-hand clothes in your wardrobe (host a clothing swap w/ friends for a no-spend option) – Walk, bike, & use public transit more often – Bring your own bag/coffee mug. It’s okay if you forget, 1x/week is still a win


At least progress is being made, the Senate Dems split about 50/50 on the Republican legislation supporting keeping troops in Syria and Afghanistan. And almost almost the presidential hopefuls voted no


Trump cannot be trusted to devise an effective, limited military strategy in Syria or most anyplace else. Nor can his administration, now dominated by neoconservative-leaning National Security Advisor John Bolton and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo. By opposing Trump’s withdrawals on procedural grounds, members of the so-called resistance are in effect demanding that this inept commander in chief send and keep troops almost anywhere in the world to fight, die, and kill. Such a position is anti-Trump only in the most superficial sense of opposing Trump’s latest preference.

If the administration deserves denunciation—and it does—then responsibility rests first and foremost with Bolton, whose job it is to run the policy process. Bolton has consistently attempted to stymie Trump’s diplomatic overtures. First, he made incendiary comments toward North Korea that nearly scuttled the Singapore summit, forcing Trump to marginalize him. Then he appears to have neglected to develop plans to withdraw ground troops from Syria, even after the president publicly repeated, for months, his wish to pull out. Process mavens should demand that Bolton be held accountable. Yet only a few anti-war voices have done so. To the contrary, in recent weeks, Bolton has emerged as the savior of the national security establishment, honoring its demand to slow the Syria withdrawal and perhaps reverse it altogether.

As far as process is concerned, the most serious response to Trump’s failings should be clear: urge Congress to reclaim its authority to make and oversee foreign policy. Fortunately, Congress is beginning to stir thanks to a handful of vocal progressives, such as Bernie Sanders and Chris Murphy in the Senate and Ro Khanna in the House, among others, who have spearheaded a resolution to end U.S. military support for Saudi Arabia’s war in Yemen. The measure passed the Senate in December over the objection of the Trump administration. Once it passes the House, it will mark the first time Congress has invoked the 1973 War Powers Act in order to remove U.S. forces from hostilities abroad. Measures such as this offer a real alternative to Trump’s recklessness. They also lay the groundwork for restraining the imperial presidency in the future—which is exactly why the establishment prefers empty shrieks to meaningful action.

Don midwest
Don midwest

how can one stop the march of war and the trillions of unaccountable dollars by the pentagon?

our national Ponzi scheme with full participation of the parties

spread $ around all congressional districts so reps can be heroes


Pass revenue reform making the wealthiest pay their fair share to balance PayGo requirements in order to get health, environmental, financial reforms. These are all broadly popular and being actively promoted and explained to the public today.

The current administration is forcing our global partners to form new alliances and reduce their dependence on America, and the dollar as a reserve currency.

As the dollar loses strength our foreign military adventurism will become more and more expensive.

At some point the wealthy who are not dependent on MIC businesses will recognize that they are the ones paying for wasteful military spending and begin calling for reducing that spending.


Full for the Republicans. Not quite full for the Dems. The Republicans are beyond hopeless. Need to elect better Dems


It’s taken 46 years for Congress to wake up to the MICC? Color me skeptical.

Don midwest
Don midwest

Marcy Wheeler who writes about national security posted a linked series of tweets today about Trump and Russia.

She now has 160K followers and has a comprehensive set of articles herself and links to other developments. As I noted before, I don’t put her in my regular tweeter feed because of too many tweets.

My view: Russia was out there, but not the big monster that the democratic party wants to make it. And Marcy herself had info about Russian involvement and went to the FBi with it.

In brief, this tweet explains that Trump opened the barn door to enable other criminals to do their deed but when the DNC emails were hacked, they went into panic mode. This was about $. And they have been in cover up mode ever since.

As an aside, Marcy’s latest article is about how hard it is for Muller to remain credible in the face of so many lairs in the cases.

Here is the link to the tweets mentioned above



A new poll is finding broad support for an annual wealth tax on people with assets of at least $50 million, underlining support for taxing the rich.

The Hill-HarrisX poll released Wednesday found that 74 percent of those surveyed back an annual 2 percent tax on people with assets over $50 million, and a 3 percent tax on people with assets in excess of $1 billion.

The poll showed support for the idea among people of all ages and races and from both political parties.

Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) proposed the wealth tax last month. She is one of several high-profile Democrats calling for higher taxes on the wealthy.


Evil Sweden 🇸🇪


The best and the worst in one photo


This, I think, is why I felt a sense of odd identification at the sight of Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, who was enduring the spectacle live for the first time. At most points during the night, she looked sincerely forlorn—eyes wide, mouth falling. She’s a politician, a very good one, attuned ingeniously to images and attitudes and their reception by the public, and therefore couldn’t help but participate: she wore a white, slitted, futuristic cape, joining her Democratic women colleagues in a visually haunting tribute to last century’s suffragettes. She also wore a pin bearing the face of Jakelin Caal Maquin, a seven-year-old Guatemalan girl who, in December, died of “dehydration and shock” while in the custody of U.S. Customs and Border Protection. It’s true that much of Ocasio-Cortez’s appeal has to do with her frank and fluid way of expressing a politics whose particulars are increasingly popular across the country. But some of it feels substitutionary, having something to do with her status as an ambassador from everyday life—still so much like the rest of us who follow politics, caught between complicit spectatorship and horror at the seriousness at hand. One darkly funny gif starts in a tight shot around her downcast face, then pans out slowly, showing her applauding colleagues. Joe Manchin, the Democratic senator from West Virginia, who seems to believe in little if anything at all, stands clapping and grinning, like a dad between innings at the park. Ocasio-Cortez looks like she’s wondering just what kind of club she worked so hard to join.



Wow. Showing the craven.


I am posting this because it seems to send a message. Also too it made me laugh!😁😁


Some of the replies were pretty funny, too. Not so sure Milady Prosecutor’s identity politics are going to work so well.


From the Pet Shop Boys—an ode to Trump. “Give Stupidity a Chance”




The Root has some good stuff. That certainly wasn’t





Obamacare supporters are mounting a campaign to get Medicaid expansion on the Florida ballot in 2020, potentially elevating the Obamacare program as a key election issue in the presidential swing state.

A mix of national and local health care groups, energized by the approval of Medicaid expansion ballot initiatives in three conservative states in November, have been collecting signatures for weeks to support a voter referendum that could cover an additional 700,000 low-income Florida adults. For now, however, the groups aren’t saying much publicly about the effort.


Quite clever





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