Good God. I still just can’t. Open thread.
Archives for November 2017
First things first- it’s just not normal that I have both Senators Joe Manchin and Shelly Moore Capito’s phone numbers, as well as Rep. David McKinley’s, programmed into my iphone address book because every week or so I have to call them to beg them to stop trying to destroy the country. THIS. IS. NOT. NORMAL.
What makes it even stranger is I have to call and beg them to not do extremely UNPOPULAR things:
Senate Republicans’ effort to pass tax reform is at a crucial juncture. As some senators waffle on whether to support the bill, they may want to spare a glance toward public opinion: Poll after poll shows that more voters than not are opposed to their efforts. In fact, the GOP bill is one of the least popular tax plans since Ronald Reagan’s day.
About a third of voters currently support the Republican tax reform package, according to an average of five surveys released1 this month. In a Quinnipiac University survey, just 25 percent of voters approved of the plan. Surveys from ABC News/Washington Post, CNN, Morning Consult and YouGov put approval of the plan slightly higher, but all are still at 36 percent or lower. Meanwhile, an average of the five polls puts opposition at 46 percent.
Why is support so low? Americans are opposed to the bill because they think it disproportionately benefits the rich. (It likely will.) President Trump’s administration has argued, however, that there were similar complaints about the Reagan tax cut plan of 1981, which preceded an economic boom.
This tax cut is less popular than past tax INCREASES. A while back I made a joke about what compromise was like with crazy people:
I really don’t understand how bipartisanship is ever going to work when one of the parties is insane. Imagine trying to negotiate an agreement on dinner plans with your date, and you suggest Italian and she states her preference would be a meal of tire rims and anthrax. If you can figure out a way to split the difference there and find a meal you will both enjoy, you can probably figure out how bipartisanship is going to work the next few years.
We’re now to the point where the American people are screaming for Italian, and the Republicans are looking back at us and telling us that spaghetti is out of the god damned question, and not only are we getting tire rims and anthrax but we need to wash it down with liquid drano.
This is insanity. They literally want to push the country off a cliff to provide aid and comfort to people who don’t need it and have openly stated they aren’t even going to spend the money the way the Republicans say they will.
Lauer, who was paranoid about being followed by tabloid reporters, grew more emboldened at 30 Rockefeller Center as his profile rose following Katie Couric’s departure from “Today” in 2006. His office was in a secluded space, and he had a button under his desk that allowed him to lock his door from the inside without getting up. This afforded him the assurance of privacy. It allowed him to welcome female employees and initiate inappropriate contact while knowing nobody could walk in on him, according to two women who were sexually harassed by Lauer.
According to sources, the sexual harassment extended to when Lauer traveled on assignment for NBC. Several employees recall how he paid intense attention to a young woman on his staff that he found attractive, focusing intently on her career ambitions. And he asked the same producer to his hotel room to deliver him a pillow, according to sources with knowledge of the interaction.
If this keeps up, pretty soon you won’t be able to lock your co-workers in your office without their consent.
Whenever the latest sexual harassment stories come out, a lot of people say “that’s terrible, this is so depressing”. I guess I have the opposite reaction. I already knew this kind of thing was going on and I’m glad the perps are being caught. I’ll admit to being slightly surprised by the depths of Harvey Weinstein’s depravity and a little sad about Louis CK, but nearly all of the rest sounds like standard delusional ugly older powerful guys abusing their power to get their rocks off by victimizing young women. I wish this wasn’t so common but it is. It’s great that the stories are finally getting out there. Maybe I’m getting carried away, and I know this particular moment won’t last forever, but I think we’re on the cusp of a massive positive change in workplace conditions for women.
I feel the same way about possible upcoming craziness with the Mueller probe. You and I and everyone here know what a corrupt, destructive, morally and intellectually bankrupt pile of trash the GOP is, but not everyone knows that. They should, and, on a positive note, the unpopularity of ACA repeal and the new tax bill shows that indeed that reality is being recognized more and more. I think Betty is right that:
[I]t’s fundamentally different to have a shamelessly sexist, openly bigoted, pathologically lying, anti-1A demagogue who is beholden to a foreign autocrat and a fellow traveler with white nationalist Eurotrash in the Oval. IMO. YMMV. Etc.
That’s why it would be fitting if the probe blew up in a way that badly hurt Trump and the Republican party. Being beholden to a foreign autocrat *is* something fairly new for Republicans, and I think as it comes to light, some proportion of the population that was ok with all the other awful stuff Republicans do will turn against Trump and the GOP. It only takes a few percent to move the next election from being almost-but-not-quite in the House to being a real wave.
One other thing: I know “constitutional crisis” sounds scary but we *already* live under a system where the sitting elected president lost the popular vote badly, probably won some states he would have lost if not for voter suppression, and where Democrats might win the overall House vote by 7% without getting a majority. I’d say we’re already in a major political crisis, and the more quickly people become aware of it, the better. And I’d much rather more people become aware of it because of something like presidential pardons than by 30 million people losing their health care.
I believe these two things can be true at the same time:
1) This is a racist-ass country, and the Republican Party has exploited that fact for political power since the 1960s.
2) It is unprecedented, alarming and outrageous that the president of the United States is retweeting neo-Nazi garbage people and declaring all-out war on the media today.
I understand the points Doug made in yesterday’s “Original Sin” post. They are good points and something we should keep in mind when some idiot suggests we nominate a Republican as VP at the 2020 Democratic Party convention to form a “unity ticket” for post-Trump Hellscape America.
But I still say it’s fundamentally different to have a shamelessly sexist, openly bigoted, pathologically lying, anti-1A demagogue who is beholden to a foreign autocrat and a fellow traveler with white nationalist Eurotrash in the Oval. IMO. YMMV. Etc.
Anyhoo, open thread, I guess. Jesus Christ, this just gets worse every fucking day.
Not at 30 Rock:
NBC News said Wednesday that it has fired Matt Lauer over “inappropriate sexual behavior,” making the “Today” show star the latest high-profile man to become embroiled in workplace harassment allegations.
In a staff memo, NBC News Chairman Andrew Lack said the network received “a detailed” complaint about Lauer Monday night. “It represented, after serious review, a clear violation of our company’s standards. As a result, we’ve decided to terminate his employment.”
Lack added: “While it is the first complaint about his behavior in the over twenty years he’s been at NBC News, we were also presented with reason to believe this may not have been an isolated incident.”
Lauer, 59, joined “Today” in 1994 as its news anchor. He became co-host of the morning program with Katie Couric in 1997 after Bryant Gumbel stepped down.
His current co-host, Savannah Guthrie, read Lack’s statement on the air on Wednesday’s program.
Still time for him to get residency in Alabama and primary Richard Shelby, I suppose. Just work on his bible thumping a bit.