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  The hypocritical party
Posted by: Admin - 01-28-2018, 01:11 PM - Forum: The Nasty Party - No Replies

Quote:Yesterday, the Wall Street Journal reported that casino mogul Steve Wynn, the Finance Chairman of the Republican National Committee, had engaged in serial sexual harassment and assault. The report was based on dozens of interviews in which people described how Wynn engaged in a “decades-long pattern of sexual misconduct” including “pressuring employees to perform sex acts.”

For 24 hours, the Republican Party said nothing. The silence was particularly remarkable in light of the GOP’s reaction to reports in October that Harvey Weinstein sexually assaulted numerous women. The same day the first report was publish, the Republican Party demanded the Democratic Party and all Democratic officials return money from Weinstein, who was a major donor to Democrats.
The GOP finally released a statement on Steve Wynn — and it’s pathetic – ThinkProgress

And here is that statement they finally put out:

Quote:Today I accepted Steve Wynn’s resignation as Republican National Committee finance chair.

No mention off:'
  • The reason of his dismissal
  • Women, the accusations
  • The money ($2.5M) he donated to the party and whether they are going to return that.
Also keep in mind:
  • All the accusations they threw at liberals, liberal media and liberal Hollywood
  • The silence about the rot in their own camp (Fox news, Trump, etc.)
  • The fact that invariably it's the liberal media who discover this stuff

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  Republican's anti-labor policies
Posted by: stpioc - 01-27-2018, 04:01 AM - Forum: Capital versus labor - No Replies

Quote:When you leave a few bucks on the table for your waitress at the diner, you probably assume that she'll scrape together enough Washingtons by the end of the evening to get by, since those tips augment the same $8.60-an-hour everybody else gets. Wrong on both counts.

New Jersey, like many states, has a $2.13 minimum wage for restaurant servers, so "they live on tips" is simply a fact. And last month, Donald Trump's Department of Labor made it legal for employers to grab a part of that tip for themselves. That's right, the boss gets first dibs, as long as these employees are paid up to the regular minimum wage once their pay is calculated.

It's called "tip-stealing," and it's going to squeeze 140,000 workers in our state especially hard. How hard? Tipped workers will lose $119.7 million a year in New Jersey - and $5.8 billion nationally - according to a report from the Economic Policy Institute. And women will be hit especially hard, as they represent 80 percent of that work group..
Your waitress makes $2.13 per hour. And now Trump wants to take her tips | Editorial | NJ.com

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  Government shutdown
Posted by: Admin - 01-22-2018, 12:01 AM - Forum: Trump - No Replies

Everybody remember that meeting on TV where Trump said he'd sign anything that was put in front of him with regards to DACA (those dreamers whose future are now in limbo), even a 'clean' DACA bill (remember the panicked Republicans in the room, one hastily intervening)?


Quote:GOP Sen. Lindsey Graham (S.C.) warned on Sunday that the White House staff is undercutting President Trump and Congress's ability to get a deal on immigration. "Every time we have a proposal it is only yanked back by staff members. As long as Stephen Miller is in charge of negotiating immigration, we're going nowhere," Graham told reporters as he headed into a closed-door negotiation with a bipartisan group of senators. He added that "the White House staff, I think, is making it very difficult."
Graham: Stephen Miller makes immigration deal impossible  | TheHill

So it's the Steven Miller shutdown, as it happens. Even Lindsey Graham agrees..

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  The Republican obfuscation of the Mueller investigation
Posted by: Admin - 01-19-2018, 08:12 PM - Forum: Trump - Replies (10)

From ThinkProgress:

The truth about the new ‘top secret’ memo Republicans can’t stop talking about
Yes, please, release the memo.
AARON RUPAR[/url]JAN 19, 2018, 1:05 PM

House Republicans and right-wing media outlets [url=http://www.breitbart.com/big-government/2018/01/18/worse-than-watergate-shocking-house-intel-memo-allegedly-reveals-fisa-abuse-by-senior-doj-and-fbi-officials/?utm_source=facebook&utm_medium=social]are up in arms about a classified memo
 purportedly detailing misconduct related to the FBI’s investigation of the Trump campaign for possible collusion with Russia.
After reviewing it on Thursday, a number of Trump-supporting Republicans flooded the airwaves on Fox News. On Hannity, Reps. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) and Jim Jordan (R-OH) called for Mueller to be fired, with Gaetz characterizing the special counsel’s investigation as “a lie built on corruption” and akin to “a palace coup.” On Friday morning, Fox & Friends spun the story as “worse than Watergate.”
The night Fox News went completely off the rails Conspiracy theories were featured on three straight shows — with a dash of racism mixed in.

Meanwhile, Trump supporters like Rep. Mark Meadows (R-NC), Rep. Sean Duffy (R-WI), and Donald Trump Jr. called for the memo to be immediately released to the American public.
[Image: LT8aZzfcv3ZUJDJc?format=jpg&name=small]

Quote:Mark Meadows


I viewed the classified report from House Intel relating to the FBI, FISA abuses, the infamous Russian dossier, and so-called "Russian collusion." What I saw is absolutely shocking.

This report needs to be released--now. Americans deserve the truth. #ReleaseTheMemo
12:52 AM - Jan 19, 2018

Quote:Donald Trump Jr.


The democrats are lucky Republicans are honorable people. If we played the game like they do the memo would be all over CNN and everywhere else by now. Maybe it’s time we stoop to their level? #releasethememo
11:12 AM - Jan 19, 2018

Quote:Sean Duffy


Just reviewed the HPSCI memo detailing FBI & FISA abuses, and it is very concerning. Every American has a right to see this memo immediately. #ReleaseTheMemo
12:44 PM - Jan 19, 2018

There are a number of reasons to be extremely skeptical about the memo, however.
House Intelligence Chair Devin Nunes has already been involved in discredited efforts to run interference for Trump
According to Lawfare executive editor Susan Hennessey, Rep. Devin Nunes’ (R-CA) fingerprints are all over the FISA memo.
Quote:Susan Hennessey


It appears to be some loose collection of Nunes's individual unfounded allegations related to unmasking, not clearly even endorsed by his fellow Republicans, now being seized on by opportunists looking for a Hail Mary to try to tank the 702 bill before Trump signs it. https://twitter.com/Brian_Boughton/status/954215800965160960 …
11:37 AM - Jan 19, 2018

Citing a source with knowledge, Natasha Bertrand of Business Insider adds that the so-called “Nunes memo” embodies “a level of irresponsible stupidity that I cannot fathom. Purposefully misconstrues facts and leaves out important details.”
Nunes, chair of the House Intelligence Committee, was at the center of a previous ham-handed attempt to run interference for Trump. Last spring, Nunes traveled to the White House to review documents that he said showed that “on numerous occasions the intelligence community incidentally collected information about US citizens involved in the Trump transition.”
Nunes was attempting to validate Trump’s reckless claim that then-President Obama “tapped” his phones. Trump went as far as to accuse former National Security Adviser Susan Rice of criminal acts related to unmasking, claiming the Obama administration’s surveillance practices are “one of the big stories of our time.”

But neither Nunes or Trump ever produced any evidence of wrongdoing, and their accusations were debunked by congressional sources on both sides of the aisle. With their narrative in shambles, the fact Nunes and the White House had clearly colluded in an attempt to manufacture a scandal led Nunes to announce he was “temporarily” stepping aside from the House Intelligence Committee’s Russia investigation.
Quote:Matthew Miller


You can’t think about this Nunes memo without remembering that his last big foray into this territory, the unmasking stunt, was completely fabricated. Credibility matters, and he’s burned his.
10:08 AM - Jan 19, 2018

Republicans are trying to revive a process story that has already been debunked
In recent weeks, Nunes, Jordan, Gaetz, Hannity, and others have been ceaselessly trying to turn the story surrounding the Trump campaign’s Russia ties into a process story about the origins and nature of the FBI investigation. These Republicans are eager to cast the decision to investigate Trump as political, and prompted by the Steele dossier, which was partially funded by allies of Hillary Clinton.
But we recently learned that the story of the FBI’s investigation begins with Trump campaign foreign policy adviser George Papadopoulos telling an Australian diplomat that Russia was in possession of political dirt about Hillary Clinton. What’s more, the investigation began in July 2016 — four months before Trump won the election.
Though Jordan has spent months promoting his Comey/Clinton conspiracy theory on the uncritical programming of Fox News, his claims have not held up under the slightest bit of scrutiny.
Jordan and Hannity are harping on FBI’s process as a way to distract from the story surrounding the Trump campaign’s ties with Russia — the actual thing Mueller is investigating. The new effort to create controversy about the FISA memo represents an extension of that effort.
The memo is not an official work product of the House Intelligence Committee
The FISA memo is not an official work product of the House Intelligence Committee — and it’s not clear how it was proudced. According to a Daily Caller reporter, no Democrats have even seen it.
Quote:Chuck Ross@ChuckRossDC

I'm told that 115 non-House Intel Committee members have seen the FISA memo. None of them are Democrats.
1:39 PM - Jan 19, 2018

Not only are the origins of the memo unclear, but the question of which members of Congress endorse its findings remains open.
Republicans are using a lot of adjectives but won’t talk about what the memo actually says
Republicans are doing all they can to spread the idea that the memo contains scandalous findings.
[Image: DT6vHUOVoAEQ6tZ?format=jpg&name=small]
Quote:Ben Dreyfuss


These commments are all so over the top that the memo almost certainly says nothing.
“My stars! After reading the memo, I almost fainted!”
“‘Water,’ my aide shouted, running to my side. ‘Bring the congressman water!’”
1:38 PM - Jan 19, 2018

But over the course of numerous interviews on Fox News on Thursday and Friday, not a single Republican who has seen the memo said a single thing about its substance or what exactly they find so troubling about it.
There’s nothing standing in the way of the memo being released for public consumption
As National Review reporter Jim Geraghty pointed out on Twitter, there’s absolutely nothing stopping President Trump from declassifying the memo and releasing it for public review.
Quote:Jim Geraghty


If this memo is such a smoking-gun bombshell that incriminates Obama, Comey, Mueller, Fusion GPS, etc. … why do we need a #ReleaseTheMemo Twitter campaign? Why isn’t the president declassifying it himself immediately?
11:35 AM - Jan 19, 2018

Even if Trump elected not to declassify the memo, Republican leaders in the House [url=http://thehill.com/policy/national-security/369721-gop-reps-demand-release-of-shocking-surveillance-memo]could do it without any Democratic support. And yet they haven’t, which makes one wonder if Republicans stand to lose more than they would gain from the memo’s public release.
The memo is being pushed by Republicans who have already proven they’re willing to do anything to protect Trump
A number of Republicans who are leading the effort to make a fuss about the memo, including Gaetz and Rep. Ron DeSantis (R-FL), have already called for Mueller to be dismissed.

Others — including Nunes and Jordan — have proven they’ll stop at nothing in their efforts to defend the president.
In short, the Republicans making the most noise about the memo have already demonstrated they are operating with motives besides protecting Americans from unwarranted surveillance. And their effort to muddy the waters is being aided by Russia-linked Twitter accounts.

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  Special mention: Paul Ryan
Posted by: Admin - 01-19-2018, 07:32 PM - Forum: The Nasty Party - No Replies

Quote:Paul Ryan’s absolute greatest passion in life, the thing that drives him and underlies all of his work in public office, is destroying government programs for poor and low-income people. This was behind his 2005 push to privatize Social Security; it’s behind the budgets he released every single year from 2008 to 2014, which dramatically slashed everything from Medicare to Medicaid to food stamps; it’s behind his “poverty plan” that promised to block-grant food stamps and Medicaid and thus eliminate the federal guarantee that the poor won’t die from starvation or lack of medical care; it’s behind his proposal to take money away from poor disabled people and slap ineffective and vindictive work requirements on every program in sight.

Paul Ryan is a guy who, by his own recollection, has been dreaming of taking health care away from poor people since he was “drinking out of kegs,” and who makes his interns read Ayn Rand’s Atlas Shrugged, an extended argument for the moral precept that poor people are stupid and lazy and do not deserve help from anybody. This person, on Friday, condemned Democrats for … not wanting to give health care to poor and middle-class children.

Let me be very, very clear. Paul Ryan is the speaker of the US House of Representatives. He has been speaker since October 29, 2015. That’s six months after the last time Congress funded the Children’s Health Insurance Program. Ryan has known, for his entire time as speaker, that funding for CHIP would expire on September 30, 2017

He had ample opportunities to address that. He could’ve reached out to President Obama and offered to extend it for several more years. He could have agreed to make it an entitlement, like Medicaid, whose funding does not have to be continually reauthorized. Obama, I guarantee you, would have leaped at the opportunity to permanently enshrine and fund a vital program that gives health care to 9 million poor and middle-class kids.

Ryan, if he were so passionate about CHIP, could have made its renewal a priority in 2017, under unified Republican control of government. He could have introduced a simple bill funding it for a few more years, or many more years, and brought it to a vote in the House. Democrats would have helped it easily evade a filibuster in the Senate.
Paul Ryan is lying to you about the Children’s Health Insurance Program - Vox

Etc. etc.

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  The "Freedom" Caucus gets behind Trump
Posted by: Admin - 01-13-2018, 03:54 PM - Forum: The Nasty Party - No Replies

It's that murderous Freedom Caucus again..

Quote:President Donald Trump has gotten a huge boost from a handful of conservative House members in his quest to counter special counsel Robert Mueller's Russia investigation. Many of those congressmen are members of the conservative Freedom Caucus.

Reed Galen, a Republican strategist who formerly served as Sen. John McCain's deputy campaign manager for his 2008 presidential bid, said there are a couple of reasons why conservatives have rallied behind Trump on this cause. Among them is that Trump "best represents" what their idea of government should be, and the members "probably really believe in the 'deep state' and black helicopters." "These guys are political nihilists," he said. "They don't believe in government, they don't like and don't want to contribute to legislative progress." This allows them to work "on discrediting the state from their perch within it."
Freedom Caucus goes all out to fight for Trump against Mueller - Business Insider

Undermining crucial institutions that are actually underpinning democracy, freedom and economic growth

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  The next big scandal you haven't heard about..
Posted by: stpioc - 01-09-2018, 02:20 PM - Forum: Obamacare - Replies (1)

Quote:It has been 52 years since I and my colleague, Dr. Count Gibson, launched the first two community health centers in this country under the auspices of Tufts University Medical School. One was in rural Bolivar County in the Mississippi delta and the second in a Boston public housing project. Since then that model has become the very backbone of the national health safety net in the United States, with over 10,000 sites caring for 27 million people living in or near poverty, and in many cases without health insurance.

Yet now, as a consequence of congressional paralysis, these health centers are faced with a potential loss of billions in federal support. Without action in the next few weeks, 9 million patients will lose access to primary and preventive care; over 51,000 providers and other staff will lose their jobs; health centers will be forced to close at least 2,800 sites; and economically stressed communities will lose $7.5 billion in local health-care investment. Health centers provide a full range of primary care and are designed to emphasize prevention, accessibility, and affordability, and they have been credited with significantly improving the health of both their individual patients and the communities they serve.
Health care for the poor at brink of expiration | TheHill

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  The Fox TV President
Posted by: Admin - 01-08-2018, 01:21 AM - Forum: Trump - No Replies

When a guy does not read, isn't curious and gets most of his info from Fox News (and has a bad temper and big ego), Trump is exactly the sort of President you'd expect..

Quote:President Donald Trump’s work day has shrunk since the early days of his presidency, Axios reported Sunday, often not starting until 11 a.m. and including hours of “executive time” that he largely spends watching TV, tweeting and talking on the phone. Axios, which was shown copies of his private schedules, also reported that Trump is holding far fewer meetings than previously in his term. Trump’s daily schedule usually has 8 a.m. to 11 a.m. blocked out for “executive time,” according to the report, “but the reality is he spends that time in his residence, watching TV, making phone calls and tweeting.” His work days typically end at 6 p.m. Last month, the New York Times reported Trump spends four to eight hours a day watching TV. His first meeting of the day is often an intelligence briefing at 11 a.m., Axios said. The late start is a significant departure from his predecessors: former President Barack Obama reportedly started his work day between 9 and 10 a.m., and former President George W. Bush started his day around 6:45 a.m.
Trump’s work day said to start late to allow time for TV, Twitter - MarketWatch

Is it a surprise that such a one-sided 'informed' President:
  • Sprouts a host of conspiracy theories (Deep state nonsense, Benghazi, Clinton emails, birther nonsense, etc.)
  • Thinks Obamacare is collapsing
  • Thinks the economy was really bad under Obama and has drastically improved under him

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  The Republican reality problem..
Posted by: stpioc - 12-13-2017, 08:10 PM - Forum: Science and Climate - No Replies

Quote:In Alabama, 71 percent of Republicans say they believe the allegations against Roy Moore are fabricated. In Washington, President Donald Trump believes he “won the popular vote if you deduct the millions of people who voted illegally” (he didn’t), that he had “the biggest Electoral College win since Ronald Reagan” (nope), that his inauguration crowds were the largest ever (they weren’t), and that virtually any information he dislikes is “FAKE NEWS!” It’s comforting to imagine this denialism as a particular affliction of the Trumpist factions of the modern GOP. It isn’t. It’s present even in the most sober, credible, and respected corners of the Republican Party. It predates Trump and Moore, and it arguably led to their rise.

The battle over tax reform has been a particularly stunning example. Republicans in the House and Senate have passed bills that will add a trillion dollars or more to the debt, and they simply pretend otherwise, despite mountains of evidence (and common sense) to the contrary. The debate shows that the most established of establishment Republicans are just as resistant to unpleasant information, just as happy to live in fantasy worlds of their own concoction, just as likely to wave away overwhelming evidence as partisan fabrication.

hat the GOP tax bills will add to the debt is not a controversial, or even arguable, conclusion. The proposals have been assessed by the right-wing Tax Foundation, the centrist Tax Policy Center, the respected Penn Wharton Budget Model, and even Congress’s internal referee, the Joint Committee on Taxation. A number of these estimates were so-called “dynamic scores” — the Republican gold standard for tax analysis, which takes into account the possible growth from tax changes and the new revenues that growth can create

Every single one of these estimates concluded that the GOP’s tax plan would add $1 trillion or more to the debt over the next decade. “Tax cuts do not pay for themselves — they do not even come close to paying for themselves,” wrote the nonpartisan Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget in a meta-analysis of the various estimates. survey of 42 top economists failed to find a single one who believed the tax cuts wouldn’t add to the national debt.

Dave Roberts has written in detail about our “epistemic crisis,” which he traces to “the US conservative movement’s rejection of the mainstream institutions devoted to gathering and disseminating knowledge (journalism, science, the academy) — the ones society has appointed as referees in matters of factual dispute.” You see the process in action here. To hold fast to their assertions that tax cuts pay for themselves, Ryan, McConnell, and even Collins have had to ignore the economics profession, all credible journalism on tax policy, and the official judgment of Congress’s own analysts. And if they can ignore those institutions, and encourage their supporters to ignore those institutions, why can’t Trump and Moore do the same on matters both trivial and profound?
Donald Trump, Roy Moore, and the Republican Party’s reality problem - Vox

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  Trump's science policies
Posted by: stpioc - 12-11-2017, 08:24 PM - Forum: Science and Climate - Replies (3)

The budget isn't good for science

Quote:If you thought the Republican tax plan was just about huge tax cuts for the wealthy, think again. It’s also a major attack on science. To understand why, let’s step back a bit. The scientific enterprise in America heavily relies on grad students. They do mostly invisible work in thousands of labs and research institutions across the US, on everything from basic research about human cells to clinical research on how to cure cancer. Their contributions are essential to running studies. In exchange for that labor during their training, the federal government gives them a break on their taxes. Very simply, grad students get their tuition and other school fees waived while they’re teaching or researching. When tax season rolls around, they’re exempted from having to pay taxes on that money (which never hits their pockets).

But under the House version of the tax bill, these waivers would become taxable income. “This means that MIT graduate students would be responsible for paying taxes on an $80,000 annual salary, when we actually earn $33,000 a year,” explained one MIT grad student, Erin Rousseau, in an op-ed in the New York Times. “That’s an increase of our tax burden by at least $10,000 annually.” This waiver repeal appears in the House bill, not the Senate bill, and Congress is currently reconciling these two versions as part of its effort to form the tax code. But if this change becomes law, make no mistake: It’ll seriously damage the model that keeps America’s scientific labs running, wrote Jeremy Berg, the editor-in-chief of the Science journal, in another new op-ed.

The House bill would also drop the student loan interest deduction, which helps people who are paying their student loans manage their debt. And provisions in both the House and Senate bills would add an excise tax on income from university endowments. “Disturbingly, these provisions emerged from a remarkably opaque process with little or no discussion of their policy objectives or analysis of data that would inform these important decisions,” Berg wrote. And they would hamper universities’ abilities to attract and retain the talent needed to run the labs that have made America a global scientific powerhouse..
The GOP tax plan would blow a hole in American science - Vox

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