Paul Ryan is against working with Democrats:
“What I worry about, Norah (O’Donnell), is if we don’t do this, then he’ll just go work with Democrats to try to change Obamacare — and that’s hardly a conservative thing,” he said.
“If this Republican Congress allows the perfect to become the enemy of the good, I worry we’ll push the President to working with Democrats. He’s been suggesting that much.”
Who calls him out on this? Not the media which continues to see St. Paul as the serious, wonky bipartisan the country needs at this juncture, but a Republican Senator.
We have come a long way in our country when the speaker of one party urges a president NOT to work with the other party to solve a problem.
— Senator Bob Corker (@SenBobCorker) March 30, 2017
Not that I really love Corker, but that’s where we’re at: the media is holding Paul Ryan to a lower standard than elected Republican officials are.
They are all crabs in a pod.
Media is the T’s base, they installed him, they are trying their best to salvage his dynasty.
This is as transparently phony as a WWE match. In this round, Ryan is playing the heel and Trump is the face, and they think Democrats are rubes that are going to fall for it..
Looks like Trump’s travel ban is still a loser.
Enhanced Voting Techniques
The Dems really should tear into him for shit lines like that. They really should.
“Apparently the young and supple Mr Ryan thinks ‘Russian stooge’ is perfect or good.”
And when the pearl clutchers start fainting.
“He just called my party unspeakable evil, grow up for once”
I truely don’t get why people let stuff like that slide. Ryan isn’t some internet troll.
Jim, Foolish Literalist
I wonder if Corker regretted this tweet after he hit post and a jillion people immediately retweeted. I suspect that underneath it all he’s a very conventional pre-Gingrich Republican who hates Trump and thinks the Tea Baggers are vulgar and tiresome little people, but like the (I think much less conservative) Lamar! Alexander, he’s hitched his wagon to trump and the far right, so he might as well be Senator Kushner or Senator Palin.
Butthurt Jordan Trombone (fka XTPD)
Michael Tracey is a fucking tool
The Moar You Know
@Al Swearengen: You nailed that. Dems need to understand that nothing has changed; like the famous scene in Godfather 2, when it comes time for us to collect our reward, the “offer is nothing.” They will never give us anything, not even (not especially) to save face, so what’s our motivation? Call your Senators and Reps and keep telling them this. Not one inch. I’m doing it every week now.
The Pentagon is no longer giving number of US Troops Deployment to Iraq going forward….\
Where, oh where, are all the war haters that were so present when the Black man was President?
Corker is annoying. Sometimes seems semi reasonable, but almost invariably follows anything sensible with some pure distilled wingnuttery.
Not that anyone will call the granny starver out on it, but it should be considered appalling that he’s only willing to consider policy solutions to real issues if he deems them conservative enough. Imagine the pearl clutching and fainting couch routine if Obama or Pelosi had ever said they would only consider ideas that are liberal enough.
The Republican war on science intensifies in the Trump era
03/30/17 10:47 AM—UPDATED 03/30/17 10:51 AM
By Steve Benen
Meet the new Environmental Protection Agency; it’s quite a bit worse than the most recent iteration of the Environmental Protection Agency.
As the New York Times’ report explained, EPA scientists concluded last year that there are significant health consequences associated with exposure to the chemical. As of late last year, the agency had revised and research and “still concluded that the chemical should be banned.”
Chlorpyrifos’ maker, however, Dow Chemical, insisted the science is inconclusive – and Donald Trump’s EPA chief, as his wont, sided with the manufacturer.
Jim Jones, who ran the EPA’s chemical safety unit, told the Times the Trump administration is “ignoring the science that is pretty solid.”
And did the interviewer laugh in Ryan’s face over the absurdity of calling his AHCA bill either perfect or good? WTF, Eddie Munster.
The perfect may in fact be the enemy of the good, but the AHCA is so distant from either of those that you can’t talk to it without dealing with lightspeed lag.
In North Carolina, the end of an error?
03/30/17 08:40 AM—UPDATED 03/30/17 09:45 AM
By Steve Benen
It was just last year that city officials in Charlotte approved a broad anti-discrimination measure, which included protections that allowed people to use restrooms consistent with their gender identity. With remarkable speed and efficiency, then-Gov. Pat McCrory (R) and the Republican-led state legislature swiftly approved an LGBT state law, HB 2, to undo what Charlotte had done.
GOP officials were woefully unprepared for the culture-war backlash, which by some estimates, ended up costing the state dearly. It also contributed to Pat McCrory losing his job – the Tar Heel State Republican was the only incumbent governor in either party to lose in 2016.
The current effort in North Carolina is cleaning up the mess. NBC News confirmed that state policymakers have reached an agreement to repeal the so-called “bathroom bill,” but the solution is not without controversy.
The more I see of American politics, and the way your political system works, the more I am glad that we have the parliamentary system here in Canada. If we vote in a majority [probably because we approve of the policies they are saying they will implement if elected] they can pass the laws they said they were going implement. If we are conflicted, we end up with a minority, who must then compromise some to enact some form of what policies they are touting. And if they don’t…we can kick whoever we blame for the failures, out.
You guys? I am understanding less and less how this is supposed to work. Especially with a voting public that is becoming more uninformed and ignorant, and less engaged.
What should I yell at my Rep about today?
I really am a bit unsure about where to be putting my energy. And worried about my team’s loss of focus, as a result.
When the House wanted to destroy Obamacare, it was easy: “don’t destroy Obamacare!”
And it worked and we won that round.
But what now? What should we be saying? What’s our big main message?
“Fully fund cost sharing reductions!” Is that it? I’m okay with that, if that’s what we’re all going to push on.
“Investigate the Russians!” Fine with me.
“Release the tax returns!” That’s an evergreen, always good.
But what should it be? What’s the next big push where we can make a difference?
Treason in the White House and its Cover-up in Congress: Why We Need a Special Prosecutor
March 29, 2017
For months in the 2016 campaign, Hillary Clinton warned about Donald Trump’s allegiance to the Russian dictator Vladimir Putin, but our venerable media ignored her. Even when Clinton directly confronted Trump at a debate and called him a Russian puppet, our media treated it as little more than colorful campaign theater.
Partly as a result of that gross negligence, Donald Trump now occupies the Oval Office, and is in possession of the nation’s most sensitive intelligence.
Trump’s close circle’s connection is so direct to Moscow that even his friends on Capitol Hill cannot pretend it’s not a problem without an investigation. Trump’s former campaign manager Paul Manafort is not only close business associates with Russian oligarchs close to Putin, but may well have helped launder Russian money.
There’s a term for a foreign power colluding to get someone in power in another country: it’s called a coup.
Whether Putin pulled off a coup with the active cooperation of the Trump campaign is also the subject of investigations in both the House and the Senate. In the House at least, the GOP Chairman Devin Nunes has affirmatively proven himself Donald Trump’s lapdog. A former Trump transition official, Nunes has now breached Intelligence committee protocol, lying and running to the White House to both be brief and to brief Trump. Incidentally, if his claims about having a source brief him about “incidental” surveillance of Trump (meaning Trump was not the target) is even true, Nunes saw no problem with being told by sources at the Trump White House something vaguely reminiscent of the orange bobblehead’s tweets. Ever the drama queen, Nunes now says he won’t tell his colleagues on the House Intelligence Committee about this source.
Nunes has so drastically compromised himself that his hometown newspaper, The Fresno Bee, has slammed him as Trump’s “errand boy” as it added to John McCain’s call for an independent investigation with the additional demand to appoint a Special Prosecutor in light of the fact that Trump’s Attorney General Jeff Sessions has his own Russian troubles.
A Quinnipiac poll finds that two in three Americans now want that independent investigation to find out if Trump and his campaign colluded with Russia to create conditions to stage what would be tantamount to a coup of the last election. If such collusion is proven, it would constitute treason – if not in the legal sense then in every other sense – by the sitting president of the United States. It would throw the very legitimacy of Trump’s election and his presidency into deep question.
That may be why Nunes is frantically moving to cover up and shut down open investigation. He unilaterally canceled a hearing set for Tuesday, March 28, in which former Acting Attorney General Sally Yates was to testify. Trump fired Yates in January after she declined to defend Trump’s unconstitutional Muslim travel ban. Yates is thought to have blockbuster testimony that would prove Trump a liar at least when it came to what he knew and when about Michael Flynn, and sure enough, the Washington Post is now reporting that the White House tried to keep Yates from testifying, asserting idiotic versions of the attorney-client privilege. News flash, Donald: the Attorney General is America’s chief prosecutor, not the president’s personal lawyer. What’s more, the same day the White House tried and failed to convince Yates not to testify, Nunes canceled the hearing in which she would have testified.
@rikyrah: I hope the Dems and anyone who supports the LGBTQ stand firm and reject this “reversal”. Full repeal or nothing.
I don’t know enough about the bill to know whether it’s a real improvement over the current situation, but I like that the Republicans are feeling enough heat that they want to try to fix their PR problem. If I were the Governor, I might consider saying that full repeal is only option to see what happens.
@oldster: Our motto should be non-cooperation. Resist. Say No to everything on T agenda and R Congressional agenda.
Party before country. That’s who the Republicans are.
Who among us can forget all those times Corker crossed the aisle to work with President Obama in defiance of McConnell’s edicts.
@NorthLeft12: Yes, the American system was predicated on a reasonably literate and well-informed electorate. We no longer have that and so the system no longer works.
@oldster: “Find the mustard!”
Can we take this is final, definitive proof that the librul media’s definition of “bipartisan” means “Democrats and Republicans should both do what Republicans want”?
I get it: it’s good when Democrats work with Republicans–but not the other way around.
Well, for your representative, I’d go with the federal budget and the absurdity of cutting programs that are inexpensive and benefit large numbers of people.
For your Senators, I’d say the topic for the next week or so is the Gorsuch nomination and why he shouldn’t be on the Court. I’d go with the trucker case and the education for children with disabilities case as examples of why he shouldn’t be on the Supreme Court, as they both show a complete lack of common sense.
Trump’s Supreme Court nominee is overshadowed by a cloud of dark money pic.twitter.com/7CU8iAV2Jm
— The Opposition (@oppstn) March 30, 2017
I think you should have titled it “tanqueray and tonic yeah I’m f*ucked up now.”
@Bruce K: Oddly, what Ryan is calling “Perfect” is those very destructive ideas of the Freedom Caucaus. You know, the one where not only does everyone lose their insurance, but they lose it a year earlier and probably get thrown into prison for having ever applied for “welfare.”
This isn’t about perfect or good, the AHCA being neither, but about a fundamental disagreement over how best to harm the American public. To use a trope that ignores biological imperatives to protect one’s own life; the “moderate”
fascistsRepublicans want to turn up the heat on the frog slowly so it doesn’t notice it’s in danger. The Freedom KKKaucus wants to slap it right on the coals and watch it writhe.
You see, that’s where you lose us, Mister Speaker. Because what you are offering to this nation isn’t PERFECT IN ANY GODDAMN WAY SHAPE OR FORM.
@NorthLeft12: Personally, I am skeptical about the superiority of parliamentary versus the American mixed system (I would love to get rid of the Senate, but its not happening). Canada suffered through 10 years of very bad Government under Stephen Harper, whose party I think never got more than 40% of the vote but imposed a very conservative, almost Trump like Government. The problem in the U.S. is our history and racial tribalism and fact much of the South and rural Midwest is in rebellion against the Enlightenment project. Currently, in the UK, the Tories are making a reactionary revolution because they were able to get 42% the popular vote in the 2015 election. I am not particularly fond of third parties in democracies, particularly parliamentary democracies, where the first past the post plurality wins (the German and French systems of proportional representation solve this problem, but creates others.)
First, it’s somewhere between extremely unlikely and impossible that Rs and Ds will kiss and make up. Too much water has flowed under the bridge for that. It’s been clear for some time that if Ds agree generally to vote for something, Rs will say ‘no thanks’– the new fact is that vice versa is true too. And this is largely independent of whatever the ‘leaders’ say.
On top of all this, you’ve got that orange stain on the White House. It’s possible that Rs don’t understand how that makes any agreement even farther away– but it does.
Iowa Old Lady
I see Brownback vetoed Medicaid expansion in Kansas. Makes me wish there really was a fiery hell in which he’d burn forever.
By the way, Ryan is not saying anything new here as that has been the policy of the Republican majority in the house since Gingrich in 1995. The only exception has been Continuing resolutions and budget ceiling votes where Republican Speakers have to go to Pelosi hat in hand to get the votes govern because their caucus is now filled with lunatics, having been elected by lunatics and billionaires (Koch, Mercer, Adelson, etc. who by the way are also lunatics.)
Paul Ryan has told people that he’s dreamed of slashing Medicaid and other social safety net programs ever since he was drinking from kegs in college. His idea of ‘perfect’ is pretty appalling.
I’m actually looking forward to the end of the month when Ryan is going to need Democratic votes to keep the government running. Nancy should have a list of demands about a mile long that need to be met before a single Dem votes yea.
@Iowa Old Lady: Not the least bit surprised. There won’t be any progress until Brownback is raptured into a Federal job.
OT: Begum Jaan is going to be an awesome movie. Here is the trailer, that I had posted before. Click the CC button for English translation.
Aazidiyan == freedoms, sung by Rahat Fateh Ali Khan and Sonu Nigam.
The premise is that the Radcliffe line that partitioned Punjab passes through Begum Jaan’s brothel. Of course she is not happy and decides to stand her ground. Vidya Balan plays Begum Jaan. Particularly relevant when politician decide that hate is a potent weapon talk about walls and hating the other.
Oh please, oh please, let the Shitgibbon decide to make a deal with the Democrats just to spite Ryan and the Freedumb caucus. Knowing Trump’s dealmaking skills, we’ll have Scandinavian social democracy in no time.
Note to Senator Corker: We’ve come a long way in this country when the leader of the Republican Party in the Senate states openly that his primary goal is to make the president, who is a Democrat, a one-term president. His means to achieve that goal is to oppose absolutely everything the president proposes that might help him with voters and aid in his re-election.
Or, Senator Corker, have you forgotten that little detail already. When the PPACA was passed, did you, Senator Corker, vote for it? Did you even pretend you might?
No, Senator Corker, the GOP became a dysfunction party of obstruction and enemy of government a long time ago. Helping the American people is no longer seen as a legitimate Republican goal. What matters, always, are tax cuts for the wealthy and preventing the government from spending money to improve the lives of regular Americans.
@Enhanced Voting Techniques:
There’s a lot of good ones in there. I’ve used “with so much drama” a few times, and I think some other stuff.
Trump has seen the enemy and it is the House Freedom Caucus
03/30/17 11:24 AM
By Steve Benen
On Friday morning, before much of the political world was even awake, Donald Trump has already complaining about members of the House Freedom Caucus – a far-right GOP faction in Congress opposed to, among other things, the party’s health care legislation. The presidential pressure, however, didn’t work: later that day, with Freedom Caucus members refusing to budge, Trump’s bill was scrapped.
In the wake of failure, did the president try to mend fences with his intra-party foes? Actually, he did the opposite, ratcheting up the whining. On Sunday morning, Trump used Twitter to again complain about the House Freedom Caucus, and the president echoed the sentiment on Monday night.
This morning, apparently unable to let anything go, Trump once again took aim at the Republicans who stubbornly refused to follow his orders:
Here’s what Trump’s allies and supporters should worry about: he seems to have no idea why this strategy is so unwise.
Look, the arithmetic is easy to understand. There are, as of this morning, 237 Republicans in the House. It takes 218 votes to pass a bill*. There are roughly 40 members of the House Freedom Caucus. With the White House already having pushed away Democrats, and the unpopular president already lacking political capital, you don’t have to be a genius or a mathematician to realize Trump’s legislative agenda will need some House Freedom Caucus support if it’s going to pass.
And with this dynamic in mind, the president has decided his best move is to publicly complain about Freedom Caucus members – repeatedly – and threaten them in advance of the 2018 midterms. These same members, reluctant to appear weak, will almost certainly respond to Trump’s salvos by sticking to their guns.
Dems and Republicans have often agreed behind the scenes and got shit done, even when they would appear in public and go after each other. The last tax package passed in December 2015, was largely a bipartisan effort (with some advantage going to the Republicans).
But a lot of this back room co-operation drove the Tea Party nuts, since these goobers actually believe their ideologically pure BS, or at least are better at pretending when they get that sweet Koch Brothers money.
Every day, Pruitt should be made to sit in his office while they spray it with chlorpyrifos. And maybe he should take a page from the former Republican NY governor Hugh Carey’s book and drink a glass of chlorpyrifos to show us it isn’t harmful. For those too young to remember, Carey offered to drink a glass of “PCBs” taken from a contaminated building to show everyone they weren’t really dangerous. That was 1981.
As you can see, Republicans aren’t new to science denial and stupidity among party leaders is a long-standing phenomenon, not something that suddenly appeared after the turn of the century or in 2008 when Barack Obama was elected.
Drink up, Mr. Pruitt.
@oldster: I’m sure that your Rep can multi-task. Have her/him start with that list..
“Don’t let the perfect be the enemy of the good” translated into reality speak: “Don’t let the purist goal of repealing the ACA get in the way of giving even more money to people who already have more money than they know what to do with. Guys, guys, we can reduce the tax credits and Medicaid funds so that real people will end up with nothing. Just give it a little time.”
Now, how he brings the 26 Republicans who won in districts carried by Clinton along with that I have no idea.
comrade scotts agenda of rage
Remember that he gave up his effectively lifetime Senate seat so he could inflict this pain in KS on a more personal level. He won’t go back to DC unless it’s as a lobbyist.
He’s term limited out but never underestimate the underlying power of KS wingnuts to run somebody equally odious in his place.
@Feebog: I’d be happy if Pelosi just had one demand: remove Nunes from the Intelligence Committee.
Twitler’s having an all around bad day. When even European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker is throwing shade, it’s bad.
This nugget ate the end is LOL
This comes on the heels of the Brexiters getting slapped down by the EU after they officially triggered Article 50 for Brexit. Turns out you don’t get to call the shots when you chose to walk out, who knew? Will Twitler take note?
Just One More Canuck
@germy: It pains me to defend Rob Ford, but before he was mayor, he was a very effective, albeit showboating city councillor. It wasn’t until after he was elected that all of his issues became widely known. His main opposition when he won the mayoral race was an even more self-aggrandizing asshole blowhard (Furious George Smitherman). Had he not dropped out of his reelection campaign when he was diagnosed with cancer, he probably would have been a one-term mayor
@randy khan: I think the Rs’ plan is to not quite repeal but to say they did. If the Gov rejects their bill and the NCAA ban isn’t lifted, they’ll blame the Gov.
This is what happens when the media gets this high on its own supply. Corker of all people would tell Paul Ryan he’s full of shit. Boy, I expect a primary challenge next time he’s up for re-election.
Just checked and Trump’s job approval rating is down another point to 35%.
If those who voted for Trump were at all intelligent and paying attention, his approval rating would be dropping 3 or even 5 points a day. He should have already reached and surpassed the magic number of 27%, but 35% isn’t bad given how stupid his supporters are. Besides, they all just know those coal jobs are going to come pouring in any day now. Trump’s willing to poison the air and streams of Appalachia to pump up coal industry employment despite the fact that virtually every person knowledgeable about energy and coal says that coal simply can’t compete anymore with oil and gas or wind and solar power. Coal’s time is over. Who will be the last person killed in a coal mining disaster? Who will be the last miner diagnosed with black lung disease? We know neither one will be Donald J. Trump.
Paging Chuck Todd. Paging Chuck Todd. Time for another didnt have the opposition party over for dinner rant you constantly threw at Obama, right?
First of all, ZEGS, you moronic, sociopathic, treasonous fuck, the phrase is “the enemy of the GOOD ENOUGH.”
And I worry that far too many people in this country think you’re anything other than a moronic, sociopathic, treasonous fuck. The sooner people realize that you’re not even as smart as Newtie, that your wet dreams are filled with homeless or destitute Americans, that your “honesty” makes Tommy Flanagan look like George Washington, and that you’re aiding and abetting Nunes’s attempt at a cover-up, the sooner (I hope) you will be consigned to Shemya or Adak in winter, without shelter.
You evil fuck.
ETA: Apologies if I was being a little too milquetoast-y.
Gin & Tonic
I bet he’s also aware of all Internet traditions.
I have to wonder, frankly, if the 1930s German media was this starry-eyed over the blonde, blue-eyed SS officers after the Nazis fully took power. I said it before and I’ll say it again: Paul Ryan is nothing more then Nazi SS in a suit. He wants to kill tens or hundreds of thousands of people to satisfy his twisted visions. He’s fucking STILL on about Obamacare repeal. He will never rest until either he’s voted the hell out or I and everyone like me are dead.
Not to burst your bubble, but even that wouldn’t stop ZEGS/ZEGK.
Obama was an “outsider”, he was urbane and he needed to bring congresscritters home to prove to them that he still knew his place and understood what a great “honor” had been bestowed on him. Also too, show that like the diners at Sylvia’s he and Michelle knew how to behave at the dinner table. Twitler has no such need, they know him, he’s their kind of people, so they’re all good.
I saw that and I am so happy with this, there are no words. There really aren’t.
Root for injuries!
@Gin & Tonic:
In addition, he’s also aware of the long-standing tradition of presidents, fewer than 100 days into the first term, declaring war on a faction within one’s own party.
Party unity — the key to Trump’s future success.
@Just One More Canuck:
Removing bike lanes and opposing AIDS funding?
Just One More Canuck
@Gin & Tonic: all of them, Katie
To be fair to Mr. Ryan, I remember someone saying on a blog once that Obama shouldn’t work with Republicans so…..BOTH SIDES!!!!!
@ArchTeryx: The media keeps covering Ryan rather than the intel hearings.
Wyden spoke about the necessity of following the money
Cling Watts added that they needed to follow the trail of dead Russians
@Gin & Tonic:
I’m sure trusted advisor, Barron has brought him up to speed on “cyber”, and he’s now an expert on all things Cyber”. Can you pay your kid a consultancy fee, when they help you out with technology?
@TriassicSands: Well, first of all, IMO, any and all political conclusions from polls are suspect. That said, this is Trump’s honeymoon, so the only way for him to go from here is downward.
@JPL: Ryan probably scheduled the press conference for that purpose. Sociopaths should not let a little treason get in the way of giving tax breaks to wealthy people.
Trump is not going to make a deal with Democrats. The idea is idiotic, so it’s possible he believes it. He wants nothing the Democrats want. Maybe he’ll offer a bill that repeals Obamacare, but merely returns Medicaid to pre-Obamacare levels. Democrats will unanimously reject it, and Ryan won’t even consider allowing a vote.
The Moar You Know
@ArchTeryx: If you can get through the almost 2000 pages of “Rise and Fall of the Third Reich”, you’d have your answer, but I already did and will save you the trouble:
Hell yes they were. And not just because the alternative was death (it was!). Most of them were totally on board.
Bitching about Hillary.
@ArchTeryx: Or at least until ZEGS is dead at least. Hopefully sooner rather than later
@Barbara: It sure does look that way.
Clint Watts stated that they’d watch when Trump was online, to dump fake news stories about Clinton. Then Trump would use that fake news on the campaign trail
@The Moar You Know:
“At least it’s an ethos.”
@The Moar You Know:
Which I’m sure did not stop Hitler from whining that the media was controlled by Jews…
@Chris: Sounds scarily familiar. (If he did that)
O. Felix Culpa
You’re right, there are almost too many issues to bear. That said, my #1 pick right now would be urging your Senators to vote NO on cloture for the Gorsuch nomination. #2, move forward on Russian connection investigations. After that, EPA, climate change, immigration, sneaky war escalation, etc. etc. etc….take your pick.
ETA: Or what randy khan said at #28. Budget is a good pick for the House, along with opposing Gorsuch in the Senate. It’s like shooting evil fish in a barrel.
Just One More Canuck
@germy: The bike lanes issue came up while he was mayor IIRC. His comments on AIDS were quickly walked back, and Smitherman was never able to make them stick to Ford like they should have. The people who loved Ford really loved him, and that was more than enough to beat someone who was (and is) a complete asshole
GOP Rep. ‘Misspoke’ When He Said Nunes ‘Works For The President’
A Republican congressman said Thursday that House Intelligence Committee Chair Devin Nunes (R-CA) “works for the President.”
“Are you concerned at all that he was viewing what he said was classified information at the White House, and then reported it back to the White House?” MSNBC’s Craig Melvin asked Rep. Ted Yoho (R-FL) Thursday morning, referring to Nunes.
“You’ve got to keep in mind who he works for. He works for the President, he answers to the President,” Yoho replied.
“Does he, or does he work for the constituents of his district?” Melvin followed up.
“Well, you do both, but when you’re in that capacity, and if you’ve got information – I’m OK with what he did,” Yoho said.
In an email to TPM, Yoho spokesperson Brian Kaveney said the congressman “misspoke” during the interview. “He knows that every member is here because of the people that voted them into office,” Kaveney wrote.
“Members work for their constituents, whether they are rank and file or if they have the honor of serving as a committee chairman,” Kaveney continued. “The congressman stated that he works for his constituents and not for the President. The same reasoning is applied to all members. As I said before, the congressman misspoke plain and simple.”
It’s okay, St. Ed Snowden assured them that Hillary was a warmongerer and Trump isn’t, and that’s all they need to know. Actions don’t matter, only pronouncements.
@Just One More Canuck:
@Butthurt Jordan Trombone (fka XTPD):
…part infinity. Great link.
I mean, I know he did it before his ascension to power. I don’t know about after.
Gin & Tonic
I don’t even like popcorn, and I’m tempted to make some.
Gin & Tonic
@hovercraft: Shorter Brian Kaveney: “Sorry I signed up to work for a fucking moron.”
@Butthurt Jordan Trombone (fka XTPD): That (the video and the thread) made my day, thanks.
This is the one that has them scrambling around trying to find their pants. We’re up to 2/3 who want an independent investigation, and we’ve barely scratched the surface on this one. Other things will come up, but this is the one with the greatest potential to actually take him down. We must walk and chew gum. This week begin to lay groundwork for opposing Gorsich(sic) next week.
Just One More Canuck
@germy: my point was that those who loved Ford really loved him and that his opponent was almost universally disliked
@Gin & Tonic:
At this point the entire GOP is being forced to assert and defend ridiculous bullshit. Last night Jeffrey Lord had this to say on CNN:
The stoopid, it burns!!
*sigh* here we go… McCaskill wobbly on Gorsuck (sic ?) filibuster.
@Butthurt Jordan Trombone (fka XTPD): Lol got his ass handed to him. What an idiot. And what on earth would prompt TYT to start carrying Trump’s water on this Russia investigation?
pseudonymous in nc
It’s been a day of Kinsley gaffes: Ryan’s little snippet, and Ted “Yahoo” Yoho saying that Devin Nunes works for the president.
Tells you a lot about how the House GOP sees its role. I’ve long thought that in spite of all the civics classes, plenty of US pols act as if they’re in a parliamentary system, and plenty of voters assume the same.
@NorthLeft12: You’ve overlooked the much greater weaknesses in the Canadian system. If the Americans had our system, Paul Ryan would be president and have the sole personal power to appoint Senators and Supreme Court justices. We have a better government only because we chose a better government; thanks to Trudeau’s Great Welch on electoral reform, there is still no safeguard against electing our own Trump.
@Al Swearengen: K fabe…
What’s Left of Trump’s Populism?
by Nancy LeTourneau
Conservative pundit and Trump supporter Rich Lowry agrees that Trumpism is in crisis — just not for the reason most people assume.
Trumpism is in crisis.
This isn’t a function of poll numbers, or the Russia controversy, or any other melodrama of the past three months, but something more fundamental: No officeholder in Washington seems to understand President Donald Trump’s populism or have a cogent theory of how to effect it in practice, including the president himself.
A lot of ink has been spilled recently in an attempt to define populism in the Trump era. But let’s simply stipulate that it means making an appeal to white working class voters. It’s interesting to note that Lowry admits that even the president himself doesn’t seem to have a cogent theory of how to effect that in practice. Who would’ve guessed that a billionaire who inherited his fortune wouldn’t have a clue about how to actually address the needs of white working class Americans?
That lack of awareness was on display when Trump pressed for passage of the Republican plan to repeal Obamacare — which would have disproportionately hurt the very people his so-called “populism” targeted. Similarly, most economists have determined that Trump’s tax plan is more designed to benefit people like him than white working class Americans.
On Tuesday, Trump made a show of including coal miners in his signing ceremony for the order to begin work on rolling back Obama’s Clean Power Plan. In what looks like a populist appeal, he promised them that they’d be going back to work. But you know who is most pleased with this action taken by Trump? More than the actual miners, it is people like Robert Murray, founder and chief executive of Murray Energy, the largest privately-held coal mining operation in the US. He summed up his views on climate change like this: “We do not have a climate change or global warming problem, we have an energy cost problem.” But take a look at what Murray himself said about coal mining jobs:
Trump has consistently pledged to restore mining jobs, but many of those jobs were lost to technology rather than regulation and to competition from natural gas and renewables, which makes it unlikely that he can do much to significantly grow the number of jobs in the industry, said Murray.
The truth is that Trump’s economic populism consists of promises based on lies. But there is one arena of his populism that is actually moving forward – albeit in fits and starts. That is his appeal to xenophobia. While the administration’s travel ban is being held up in the courts, its message is spreading around the globe…..
UPDATE: Another one of Trump’s so-called “populist” appeals is going down the tubes. Apparently he’s only going to try to make modest changes to NAFTA.
…Jeffrey Schott, a trade scholar at the Peterson Institute for International Economics…noted that a number of the proposed negotiating objectives echo provisions in the Trans-Pacific Partnership, a 12-nation trade pact among Pacific Rim countries. Mr. Trump campaigned heavily against the TPP.
@The Moar You Know: I might have to look into it anyway. I’m of German and Swiss ancestry. Always been a student of the rise of the Reich.
Thru the Looking Glass...
“If this Republican Congress allows the
perfectgood of the country to become the enemy of the goodmore important than hurting the poors, I worry we’ll push the President to working with Democratsdo something worthwhile for a change.
There… run Ryan’s comment thru a weasel words decoder, and that’s what you get…
The Moar You Know
@ArchTeryx: I found it utterly riveting and very timely. He’s not exactly an impartial observer but a very, very good one. Consider it recommended.
Author: William L. Shirer
Most interesting in terms of comparison to our own times is just how prepared the Nazis were for their takeover. You’ll feel a lot better after comparing and contrasting to the utter incompetent bumblefuck that is the Trump admin. But you will not be reassured as to how similar the mindset of the voters and ruling classes was to today.
Tillerson Lifts Human Rights Conditions for Lucrative Arms Sale to Bahrain
The U.S. State Department has informed Congress that it will proceed with a $5 billion sale of fighter jets to Bahrain, waiving concerns about the Gulf state’s human rights record that had initially delayed the deal under the Obama administration.
The decision, confirmed by officials with knowledge of the matter to The New York Times, marks a U-turn on Obama’s policy requiring Bahrain to do more to stop human rights abuses against a Shiite majority discontented with the country’s Sunni monarchy in order for the sale to go ahead.
Secretary of State Rex W. Tillerson has embarked on a round of diplomacy with Gulf leaders, meeting with the Saudi and Emirati foreign ministers this month. He has sought to realign Washington’s ties in the region amid concerns among Gulf states that the Obama administration was too preoccupied with human rights……
Treason in defense of tax cuts is no vice!
@ArchTeryx: Here is another one for you, Hitler Ascent 1889-1939 by Volker Ullrich. It’s only how he came to power and before the war so it is not complete. I slogged trough RFTR but this one,… I could not put it down. I hope he finishes the next book soon.
Fuck slime ball Tillerson. That bloodthirsty fuck!
Obviously the right move. Soon we will be able to sell weapons to the Shiites to use against the Sunni monarchy.
Human rights is for suckers. Diplomacy is about what’s in it for us. And the dopes who voted for Trump actually think these idiotic policies will make them feel safer.
White flight followed factory jobs out of Gary, Indiana. Black people didn’t have a choice
Residents who know the ugliness of racial politics all too well blame automation, not immigrants, for the destruction and despair that Trump promised to fix
Gary, Indiana, is dying. It’s a city built around a manufacturing industry mostly gone. The death isn’t complete; there are still a few factories and a few neighborhoods with nice, small homes. Other parts are only slightly scarred, with boarded-up or burned-down houses sandwiched tightly between well-kept homes. Some parts are just dead: overgrown streets lined by empty lots and broken buildings.
Although Gary is only 40 miles from Chicago, it has the feel of an isolated town. Walking the emptier parts, I see only a few solitary signs of life: the rush of a passing police car, a grandmother walking her grandchild to a corner store. As I photograph the rubble of a collapsed building, I am entirely alone until a Drug Enforcement Administration agent rolls up in a huge SUV. We chat for a bit.
He grew up in Gary, left for the military and then stayed away for work but is now back to care for his mother. He tells me unprompted not to be worried about my safety, that the residents of Gary get a bad rap but that they are hard-working, polite and smart, despite what the town might look like. I agree, not out of politeness but because it is my fourth day in Gary and I have seen the same.
He explains before leaving: “We used to be the murder capital of the US, but there is hardly anybody left to kill. We used to be the drug capital of the US, but for that you need money, and there aren’t jobs or things to steal here.”
Gary’s decline from a peak in the 1960s has brought a destruction and despair that I have seen in many de-industrialized towns across the US. Those towns voted heavily for Donald Trump for president, but Gary is different. More than 84% of Gary is African American, and although Gary has experienced more decline than most places, a strong majority voted for Hillary Clinton.
I find George Young, 88, drinking in the Chops Lounge with a group of longtime Gary residents – all of whom are vocally anti-Trump. George’s story is not uncommon in this town: at 21, he moved to Gary from Louisiana in 1951 “because of jobs. Simple as that. This town was filled with them. I left Louisiana on December 10th, got here the 11th, got a job at the Sheet and Tool company on the 12th, started working on the 13th, and spent the next 42 years and two months here.”
Although George doesn’t overlook Trump’s policies on race and immigration (“Is Trump a racist? Of course he is”), he also differs from many Trump voters in his assessment of the country’s problems.
“Trump can’t bring jobs back because the jobs are gone to automation. We used to have 10 men doing cleanup in my job. Now one man operates a machine. We used to have 10 men running the furnaces. Now robots run them.”
That view is a marked difference from what you hear from people in working-class white towns that voted for Trump, who are quick to assign blame to immigration and jobs moving overseas.
I missed this yesterday.
Lara Trump hired by Trump campaign’s digital vendor
By JULIE BYKOWICZ
Mar. 29, 2017 3:44 PM EDT
WASHINGTON (AP) — The digital vendor for President Donald Trump’s political campaign has hired a new senior consultant: the president’s daughter-in-law, Lara Trump.
The New Yorker, Eric Trump’s wife, will serve as a liaison for San Antonio, Texas-based Giles-Parscale to Trump’s ongoing campaign, based at Trump Tower in Manhattan.
Giles-Parscale President Brad Parscale says she’s an “incredibly talented person with the right experience for us.”
Parscale says Lara Trump has a background in marketing and helped on Trump’s 2016 political bid.
Parscale’s firm also serves as the data and digital provider for America First Policies, a nonprofit group started earlier this year to back Trump’s presidential agenda.
A representative for Lara Trump did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
@rikyrah: transactivists say it’s the same bill. I believe the people who are affected.
This is because trump isn’t a populist, he’s a bullshitter. He says what he thinks his audience will like without bothering to connect it to any kind of facts or plan of action. To win, he had to say stuff he thought the proles would like, so he bullshitted about stuff the proles would like. There’s no cogent theory that can turn a pile of bullshit into a plan for governance.
Hey they’re only killing and torturing Muslims, whats the big deal? They are doing our dirty work for us, what could possibly go wrong?
Aide quietly hands them a history of the Mujaheddin and backs away.
Edit to for punctuation.
The investigation of the Russian ties should come before anything else gets done. Gorsuch should not be considered until they do an independent investigation of Trump. This includes political collusion and financial ties.
…I got nothing.
I’m not sure corrupt is the proper word to use in reference to Deadbeat Donald. Criminal is probably more like it.
I guess I just see that Deadbeat Donald is the epitome of the successful businessman; a shyster and con man who commits fraud and theft on a massive scale, unimpeded by the slaps on the wrists that he has received from the government watchdogs [lap dogs?] that are supposed to be ensuring that basic laws and rules of conduct are being followed.
This TPM article on Bridget Kelly has great comments directed at Bridget.
@Roger Moore: I really don’t like how the whole concept of “populism” has been twisted and corrupted by the media.
Every time that Deadbeat Donald is called a populist, I cringe and feel the bile rise in my throat. The idea that this privileged and self centered buffoon can somehow speak for the “ordinary people” is beyond my understanding. It seems like a vicious joke. He has no effing idea how ordinary people get through their lives and what we have to deal with. Frankly, I have to question myself at times because of my insensitivity to others and their struggles wrt employment, debt, and health.
Very true. Unfortunately we are going to have to endure four years of people trying to analyze Twitler’s “base”, his “policies”, and the disappointed people who voted for him only to realize they were conned.
We’ll be told he didn’t understand how hard it would be, he was naive, and any other bullshit the media can come up with to explain away why he”s such a dismal failure after they pretended that he was just as qualified and fit to be president as Hillary. His base will be even more economically anxious than we were told, never mind the data.
We know race and gender had nothing to do with it, because they never do.
The only people obsessing about petty stuff like that are us. Behold this gem, (Weekly Standard, you’ve been warned):
The Left Is Transforming into a Religion, Maybe a Bit Too Literally
NYTimes just outed Nunes’ sources. LOL.
Ha ha ha ha ha! Pundits and other politicians keep trying to normalize Trump. They refuse to see him as what he is, a con man who has found a way to work the presidency for his own advantage.
His supporters continue to look at him as some kind of anti-Establishment savior.
Most curiously, purity pony leftists seemed stunned into silence, even though the Trump ascendancy seems to satisfy every fantasy they have ever had about plutocrats making a naked power grab.
@ruemara: It’s a shitty stinker that the dems let themselves get attached to.
I wonder why they want to sabotage an investigation into Russia? Oh yeah:
Meanwhile in the laboratories of democracy:
-Pence breaks Senate tie on ending funding for family planning and reproductive health. Which way he voted will “shock” you!
-Brownback vetoed Kansas bill to expand Medicaid.
Fvck you takers and your so-called healthcare!
@Brachiator: One of Marie Antoinett’s favorite ways to pass the time was to dress up as a shepherdess and “play” at herding sheep. Trump’s populism is best understood in that light. There are lots and lots of people who are willing to behave like the hoi polloi in order to extract money. This isn’t complicated.
@Barbara: Many of them even come to believe it. I’d bet good money that Reagan actually thought he was a rootin’ tootin’ cowboy.
@The Moar You Know: I have just started reading Erik Larson’s latest book “In the Garden of Beasts” about the US Ambassador to Germany in 1933 and his family.
Within the first chapter, Mr. Larson makes it very clear that at that time a great number of people in the Western democracies believed that; Hitler would not last long in power as he was too unstable; Hitler would be moderated by others within the German government, bureaucracy, even the NAZI party; Hitler and the NAZIs were really not that bad and were the victims of propaganda against them.
I found some of these beliefs profoundly chilling and unbelievably prescient and applicable to today. Looking forward to finishing the book off over the weekend.
@The Moar You Know: Shirer’s book was good for its time, but it’s almost 60 years old and has been superseded by many more recent works you might want to look into, like Richard Evans’ 3 volume history of Nazi Germany.
@Keith P.: I wonder if these traitorous leakers will be punished by Deadbeat Donald and his half wit posse?
Utter bullshit. Trump’s ‘populism’ is white supremacy. Nothing more, nothing less. Polling of his voters made it crystal clear that their decision making was based on racial tension, not economic tension. Trump has been working hard to effect it, but so far the courts are making it difficult. Maybe that’s why other Republicans aren’t so obvious, or maybe they’re just too addicted to being able to claim they’re not racist.
@NorthLeft12: Technically, I think those who believed 1 were about right. I mean, the 1,000 year Reich only lasted 11 years and Hitler was too unstable to play his cards right and not end up with his cities in ruins, his country occupied and divided up by his enemies, and his people starving.
The problem we have though is that a lot of the new fascist leaders are young. Yeah, at 70, Trump isn’t going to be around for along time. But someone like Orban and Putin could rule their countries for 25 more years. If they play their cards right. Which they won’t.
I mean, I do not toss around the Nazi label casually. My father’s family (Swiss) were big Nazi supporters. My father served with the AAC (Army Air Corps) in WWII for the U.S.
I call Paul Ryan SS for very good reason. It wasnt Trump that kept me up at night. It was Ryan. His Death to the Unfit bit creeps me the hell out. It reminds me all too much of my grandfather.
Thanks for that heinous ear worm, Doug.
Some many broken promises and so little time.
Seems that Mexico has a few arrows that they can fire off. The really really really funny part is the changes Trump is taking about were already agreed to by the US/Mexico/Canada in theTPP trade pact. You remember the one negotiated by that tall skinny guy, funny last name, spent to much to the golf course native of Kenya (or was it Krypton).
a thousand flouncing lurkers (was fidelio)
@Iowa Old Lady: Maybe they could cut of the air conditioning to his offices and the governor’s mansion this summer, as a cost-cutting exercise.
Having been in Kansas in the summer, I can say it might not be as hot as the theoretical flames of hell, but it will be pretty miserable. By mid to late June, the hoods of most cars parked in direct sunlight will free an egg handily.
And we must expect the governor to set a good example, after all.
The Moar You Know
@Librarian: Superseded? No. He was there, physically present, for most of it. That’s a perspective few others can bring to the table.
But there’s a wealth of good lit out there on the Nazis, too much for any one person to read. They documented everything and didn’t have time to burn most of it. That was an unparalleled boon for historians.
@The Moar You Know: What I mean is, Shirer’s book is great as an eyewitness account, but if one wants current interpretations of Nazi Germany, you have to read the work of historians who have written since. Shirer was a journalist, not a historian. His book is dated and, while a great narrative, is short on analysis.
I agree. If Trump came out and said he’d work with Democrats on legislation, the Dems could expect to be strung along and in the end, Trump would screw them and say “No way.” The man can’t be trusted — not at all, not even a little, tiny bit.
A lot of opinion columnists and analysts have figured that out. The WaPo editorial page, led by the execrable Fred Hiatt, hasn’t and probably never will. They’ll keep proposing “deals” the Dems could and should make with Trump. Ignoring all the evidence, and reality itself, the WaPo editorial board will criticize the Democrats for not making a deal that 1) won’t happen anyway and 2) wouldn’t be good for the Dems or their constituents. For example, Hiatt, et al., wrote that the Democrats should make a deal with Trump and Republicans on Gorsuch. Let him be confirmed on an up or down vote in exchange for McConnell agreeing to keep the filibuster in place for Supreme Court nominations. Why would McConnell go for that? He knows he can get Gorsuch confirmed either by a straight up or down vote or if the Dems filibuster, as Schumer has said they will, he will simply end the filibuster now rather than later. Even if the Dems could trust McConnell, and they can’t, why would he agree to something that gives him nothing he can’t get without a deal. Unless McConnell secretly loves the filibuster so much that he desperately wants to keep it in place.
–if you need bedtime reading guaranteed to put you to sleep. Evans may be a decent historian but his writing style is the equivalent of a rhinoceros trying to tapdance wearing hip boots. I have a fair interest in the subject & after I slogged my way through the first volume I handed it back to the library thinking, Bore me once, shame on you; bore me twice, shame on me…
I believe this was also said of Alberto Gonzales, “personal lawyer” of Bush the Lesser.
(BTW, rikyrah, I love your links!)
The Moar You Know
@Librarian: I consider this, and his lack of analysis (I absolutely agree, if you want analysis, go elsewhere) to be his greatest strengths. You get to watch the whole process unfold from the point of a very privileged insider. Utterly fascinating how Hitler took and then kept power.
Most disturbing from my point of view is that, contrary to common belief, Hitler did not “go crazy” until the early 1940s. He was sane, rational, in control and very, very dangerous.
Most reassuring from my point of view is this: Trump’s no Hitler, neither are any of his fellow travelers. He’s in it solely for the attention, and the rest of his cabal have no plan or guiding vision.
@The Moar You Know:
I kind of want us to make stupidly lopsided offers to see if we can get the Orange Idiot to sign on just to make a deal- it’s not like he has an actual political ideology beyond white nationalism and a vague longing for the 1950s.
Offer limited tort reform in exchange for a Public Option. Or agree to his military spending splurge in exhcange for protecting Planned Parenthood.
@oldster:”No on Gorsuch”, and “don’t dick around with the debt ceiling”.
@hovercraft: Well, thank God we avoided having that warmonger Hillary Clinton in the White House!
the “perfect” becomes
the “enemy of the good”
@oldster: save the [email protected]NorthLeft12: yeah but from what I remember, even in the book, the nazis spent time trying to charm Americans and other foreign diplomats. trump has just attacked ppl and has immediately incensed and activated a diverse and numerically significant opposition. the Nazis were way more strategic and underhanded
It’s interesting that Corker, a very conservative senator from a safe red state up for re-election in 2018, is already busy burnishing his high Broder-esque bipartisanship credentials.
Here, in the Golden Horseshoe- Mohawk Territory, to be clear-
we are extremely agitated/activated re the Great Lakes.
Invasive flying Carp. No regs. 95% less dollars from the king
I have 99 problems with the Trump Train.
His is the brick wall called Law & Order.
Good Day; The more I think about US politics it seems to me that
The Party of Grift & Stupid has ratfucking gerrymandered their way
into a very tight corner- they can’t buy the popular vote for love
nor money and when one dude gets all the money in Monopoly, well,
sometimes tables get flipped.
Cons- what are they good for? Absolutely nothing. Justifying selfish
for time immemorial.
No One You Know
@oldster: Funny, that’s just what the current DNC survey wants to know.
I had to think about it. Finally decided that this was a problem like creating a good photograph. In a composition, it’s good to get the biggest shapes sketched in first.
So that knocked out a 2-3 of the 11 things, which felt like “time-sensitive single issue hot buttons.” Very attractive, but maybe not easily leveraged, but possible to address in the right omnibus.
What problems do I share with everyone, and for which massive concerted action on an ongoing basis and in a national forum is essential? My usual suspects:
Social Security, Medicaid, and the third one. Like Rick Perry. I can’t remember three things. That’s a bonus here. The ones I remember are the ones I really have to have. I suspect the 3rd item was affordable health care. This battle is not safely won, imho.
When the lens shifted to international causes, I went into planetary mode: women, climate change, nuclear proliferation.
I’m not suggesting that these should be anyone else’s answers. My son would be putting affordable college and more jobs. Those things matter too.
So as a compositor, I reason sort of like this:
Jobs and education emerge from strategic problems. If I pick good problems, they will bring jobs and classes with them.
But, people have to survive RIGHT NOW. And hope begins with the hope for a new day.
I don’t think it matters what my top two are. I think it matters that I have them, and others are covering what I cannot. We need each other. It’s a big boat.