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Has U.S. Democracy Been Trumped? Bernie Sanders wants to know who owns America?

#13181 User is online   hrothgar 

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Posted 2019-July-18, 03:38

View PostChas_P, on 2019-July-17, 19:49, said:

I see nothing in there that has anything to do with how much light your skin reflects. If you do, that's your problem.


Actually Chas, its your problem (at least in these United States that you pretend to revere)

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Harassment Based on National Origin

Ethnic slurs and other verbal or physical conduct because of nationality are illegal if they are severe or pervasive and create an intimidating, hostile or offensive working environment, interfere with work performance, or negatively affect job opportunities. Examples of potentially unlawful conduct include insults, taunting, or ethnic epithets, such as making fun of a person's foreign accent or comments like, "Go back to where you came from, " whether made by supervisors or by co-workers.

Alderaan delenda est
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#13182 User is online   hrothgar 

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Posted 2019-July-18, 03:40

View PostChas_P, on 2019-July-17, 19:26, said:

Arend, you are in Edinburgh Scotland. Please tell us how your government has dealt with the massive influx of Central Americans into your country.


Please tell me what business a racist cracker like yourself has commenting on an elected official from Minnesota...
Alderaan delenda est
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#13183 User is offline   kenberg 

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Posted 2019-July-18, 04:52

View PostChas_P, on 2019-July-17, 19:49, said:

I see nothing in there that has anything to do with how much light your skin reflects. If you do, that's your problem.


According to our president, they are not from this country. Three were born here, one came when she was so young it can hardly matter. What does it mean to not be "from this country"? Well, you can look at them, right? Clearly if you look at them it is obvious that they are not one of us. Or so our president is saying. There really is no other way to interpret what he is saying. Factually they are from this country, but then, when you look at them, clearly they are not.

It reminded me of something from my teen years. I lived near the top of Jefferson Hill, my high school was in the area at the bottom, the teenage girl that lived near me was not allowed to date any boy who lived at the bottom. What sort of person the boy was, or what sort of person an acceptable boy from the top of the hill was, didn't matter. That involved where the boy lived, this involves how the women look. Nothing to be done, look at them, they are not us, end of story.

And now the crowds are shouting "send her back". This is sick. It's just sick.
Ken
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#13184 User is offline   y66 

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Posted 2019-July-18, 05:04

From A ‘Train Wreck’ Was Averted at the Supreme Court, but for How Long? by Linda Greenhouse at NYT:

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The poison emanating from the White House in recent days has been so overwhelming that it’s hard to remember that something else held the country in thrall just a week ago: the prospect that President Trump would defy the Supreme Court and insist on adding a citizenship question to the 2020 census.

There’s a strong temptation to extract a triumphalist narrative from the president’s grim-faced and rant-filled surrender last Thursday. After all, didn’t the rule of law prevail — and perhaps even emerge stronger for having been so sorely tested? Didn’t the country dodge a “constitutional train wreck,” as Harry Litman, a former federal prosecutor and Justice Department official in the Clinton administration, wrote in The Washington Post the next day?

Well, maybe. But it was way too close for comfort. And given the Trump administration’s undimmed determination to lock the Supreme Court into a permanent if uneasy partnership, it’s important to realize that the train is still hurtling down the track, destination highly uncertain.

So as the census saga fades from view, it should be remembered, in all its bizarre aspects, not as outlier but as exemplar. Why should we have been shocked that a president would countermand his lawyers’ judgment with a tweet, requiring them to inform a flabbergasted federal district judge that no, the case was not over, and plunging the Justice Department into chaos over a holiday weekend? This is, after all, a president who makes foreign policy via Twitter.

Are you dismayed that the secretary of commerce, Wilbur Ross, would lie about the real reason the administration was demanding the citizenship question? Well, haven’t we become sadly accustomed to administration officials who can’t get their stories straight? Good luck trying to put together a coherent account, even now, of how many families were wrenched apart after crossing the southern border, where the children were sent, and who was responsible for the human rights catastrophe that unfolded in plain view.

Think of how many contingencies had to fall into place for the census story to end the way it did. Only Chief Justice John Roberts knows whether the revelations from the hard drive of a dead Republican operative, fortuitously brought to light weeks after the Supreme Court heard oral argument, influenced his conclusion that “the evidence tells a story that does not match the explanation the secretary gave for his decision.” There was already ample evidence to that effect, evidence that had led a federal district judge in New York, Jesse Furman, to invalidate the addition of the citizenship question.

But there’s no doubt that the new evidence played a role in events surrounding the Supreme Court’s June 27 decision. In a separate challenge to the citizenship question that had been litigated in Maryland, the new evidence led the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit, days before the Supreme Court’s ruling, to permit a district judge, George Hazel, who had already ruled against the administration, to reopen the case to take evidence on whether the addition of the citizenship question was motivated by racial discrimination. As the justices surely knew, that meant that even if the Supreme Court overturned Judge Furman’s decision, which was based on administrative procedure and did not address a racial discrimination claim, the challenge to the citizenship question would have remained alive.

Then there was the thwarted effort by career Justice Department lawyers, suddenly charged with the unwelcome mission of carrying out the president’s will despite the Supreme Court’s ruling, to withdraw from the case. Both Judge Furman and Judge Hazel refused to accept the lawyers’ withdrawal; Judge Furman, citing a court rule that permits a lawyer to stop representing a client only for “satisfactory reasons,” noted that the government had provided no explanation, let alone a satisfactory one.

That may have been the moment when Attorney General William Barr concluded that the administration had to throw in the towel, whether or not the president agreed. With the district judges on high alert, any truthful explanation the lawyers gave would have been deeply hurtful: They would have had to disavow the discredited rationale they had originally provided for the citizenship question while disclosing that they were unwilling to help the administration to concoct a new one.

It’s worth saying a word about Judges Furman and Hazel, both appointed to the district bench by President Barack Obama. Both are former federal prosecutors. There was considerable grumbling from the left during the Obama years that the administration was naming too many former prosecutors who lacked any apparent ideology, rather than lawyers who had devoted their careers to progressive causes. I am not suggesting that progressive lawyers don’t make fine judges, but surely these two judges’ inside knowledge of how government lawyering is supposed to work helped fortify them in their resolve to make the government get this right. President Trump may disdain the numerous judges who have blocked him, labeling them part of the resistance, but in fact, I think these judges were trying to save the Justice Department from itself at a dangerous moment of institutional meltdown.

So the bottom line of the census saga is that yes, the rule of law prevailed in the end. But the rule of law hangs by a thread.

The Trump administration is back at the Supreme Court this week, seeking the justices’ help in its effort to build a wall on the southwestern border using $2.5 billion to be reallocated without congressional authorization from the Defense Department’s budget. With a preliminary ruling in May and a final order two weeks ago, a federal district judge in Oakland, Calif., Haywood Gilliam Jr. (another former federal prosecutor named by President Obama), blocked the Defense Department from spending money that Congress had not appropriated for that purpose.

The question then became whether the administration could obtain a stay of Judge Gilliam’s order so it could spend the money while appealing the case. The judge refused to grant a stay, and a panel of the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit ruled 2-1 to uphold his refusal. “The public interest weighs forcefully against issuing a stay,” the appeals court majority wrote, because “the Constitution assigns to Congress the power of the purse.” The judges continued: “Under the Appropriations Clause, it is Congress that is to make decisions regarding how to spend taxpayer dollars.”

Claiming an emergency, the administration went to the Supreme Court last week seeking a stay. Justice Elena Kagan, who has supervisory jurisdiction over cases coming from the Ninth Circuit, gave the plaintiff, the Sierra Club, a deadline of this Friday to file a response to the administration’s application. What’s the emergency? The answer, evidently, is that the end of the current fiscal year comes up on Sept. 30, by which time, the administration says, construction contracts have to be in place if the project is to proceed. It’s hard to read the administration’s fevered stay application without thinking, “Here we go again.”

Adding to a recent compilation by Prof. Stephen Vladeck of the University of Texas School of Law for a forthcoming article in The Harvard Law Review, this is the 28th time, by my count, that the Trump administration has gone to the Supreme Court with an emergency application of some kind — a request for a stay or for the justices to skip the appeals court and grant direct review of a Federal District Court decision, as the court did in the census case. By contrast, the administration of President George W. Bush sought Supreme Court intervention of this sort only six times in eight years. For the Obama administration, the number of such requests was four in eight years.

Clearly, we are witnessing a change of historic proportions in the attitude and behavior of a presidential administration toward the Supreme Court. It bears close and skeptical watching. What do I mean by skeptical? The Trump administration doesn’t always get what it wants from the court, of course — but that’s not the point. Sometimes the point may be to lose, and to use the Supreme Court as a foil.

If that sounds too cynical, here’s an example of that kind of thinking. In the aftermath of the administration’s surrender on the citizenship question, the right-wing radio commentator Hugh Hewitt had a column in The Washington Post with the headline “How Trump Can Mitigate Damage From Folding on the Census.” The president, Mr. Hewitt wrote, “could — should, actually — change his mind and direct Barr to file an emergency motion for reconsideration with the Supreme Court.” Implicitly acknowledging that such an effort would surely fail, he continued: “Getting bounced again would be preferable to quitting and would fix responsibility for this fiasco” — in other words, put the blame on the Supreme Court for recalcitrance and not on the administration for an outrageous policy and a legally unreasonable demand.

It takes two to make a fiasco. That we narrowly avoided one fiasco is no insurance against the next one.

If you lose all hope, you can always find it again -- Richard Ford in The Sportswriter
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#13185 User is offline   y66 

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Posted 2019-July-18, 05:14

From Jonathan Bernstein at Bloomberg:

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There was a vote on impeachment in the House of Representatives on Wednesday. Well, sort of. Not really. Maybe a little.

Confused? Here’s what happened.

Representative Al Green, a Democrat from Texas, has regularly introduced articles of impeachment against President Donald Trump. Usually, when a regular bill or resolution has been introduced, it’s then referred to committee. If the majority party doesn’t want to consider the bill, it will die with no further action. Under House rules, however, any member can force an impeachment resolution onto the floor as pending business. That’s what Green did Wednesday.

This maneuver doesn’t mean that impeachment gets a final vote, or even debate. What it does get is a “motion to table,” which means that lawmakers can vote to either keep the resolution as pending business or kill it off. When Green did this in 2017, 58 Democrats voted to keep the impeachment measure alive. In 2018, 66 did so. This time, it was up to 95.

Of course, there are more Democrats in the current Congress than in the previous one. And we can’t assume that all the votes to table were necessarily votes against impeachment (pro-impeachment independent Justin Amash voted to table, for instance). Some legislators may have objected to bringing the resolution straight to the floor on procedural grounds, or thought that Green’s articles were poorly drafted. Still, the vote offers a decent proxy for where impeachment sentiment stands in the House: It divides Democrats and unites Republicans in opposition. For now.

What I found interesting was that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, who has said she opposes impeachment, apparently didn’t whip the vote. If that’s the case, what does it say about her real position? One interpretation is that she simply wanted to mollify pro-impeachment Democrats by giving them an easy opportunity to express their views. Another is that Pelosi isn’t as opposed to impeachment as she has let on, and was using this vote to gauge sentiment within the caucus – or even to demonstrate that support for ousting the president is growing.

Of course, whipping votes is easier said than done, and it’s possible that Pelosi and other Democratic leaders didn’t think they could sway committed lawmakers even if they tried. And as always, I write as an outsider just thinking about the incentives involved, not as someone privy to the thoughts of representatives and their staffs. But I strongly suspect that a serious effort here could’ve reduced the pro-impeachment total. And the choice not to push members certainly seems deliberate to me.

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#13186 User is offline   Winstonm 

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Posted 2019-July-18, 07:05

View PostChas_P, on 2019-July-17, 19:49, said:

I see nothing in there that has anything to do with how much light your skin reflects.


To be able to see, you have to take your head out of your ass.
"Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere." Black Lives Matter.
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#13187 User is offline   jjbrr 

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Posted 2019-July-18, 08:55

View PostChas_P, on 2019-July-17, 19:49, said:

I see nothing in there that has anything to do with how much light your skin reflects. If you do, that's your problem.


Chas, "love it or leave it" is literally a KKK slogan

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#13188 User is offline   Winstonm 

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Posted 2019-July-18, 11:37

Seriously, how does this POS walk with those two things clanking together?

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President Trump on Thursday disavowed a chant at his campaign rally of “Send her back!” directed at a Somali-born lawmaker, saying, “I was not happy with it — I disagree with it.”


That's right. He says he is not happy and disagrees with "send her back", even after these tweets of his,

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So interesting to see “Progressive” Democrat Congresswomen, who originally came from countries whose governments are a complete and total catastrophe, the worst, most corrupt and inept anywhere in the world (if they even have a functioning government at all), now loudly......

....and viciously telling the people of the United States, the greatest and most powerful Nation on earth, how our government is to be run. Why don’t they go back and help fix the totally broken and crime infested places from which they came.


What, now he wants lynching parties, instead?

Well, according to this article, he may get them.

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When the president attacked Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.) — who came to this country as a Somali refugee before becoming a citizen — thousands of people inside the arena broke into a chant of “Send her back!”

It was an arresting scene: a predominantly white crowd of thousands, many in red “Make America Great Again” hats, encouraging a receptive president to illegally deport one of his political opponents, who is a black, Muslim American woman.

"Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere." Black Lives Matter.
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#13189 User is offline   Zelandakh 

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Posted 2019-July-18, 14:09

View PostChas_P, on 2019-July-17, 19:49, said:

I see nothing in there that has anything to do with how much light your skin reflects. If you do, that's your problem.

Sorry Chas, but, what?! You do not see anything related to colour from the comment "go back to where you came from" aimed at American citizens from immigrant families of colour from an American citizen of a white immigrant family who is married to a woman from a white immigrant family? Really? Seriously? If that is really your position you might just make it to being the very first person on my BBF ignore list because you would absolutely not exist to me. Supporting racism is itself a form of racism. Every educated person should know to condemn these tweets and the continuing follow-up coming from the WH.
(-: Zel :-)

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#13190 User is offline   johnu 

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Posted 2019-July-18, 16:23

View Postjohnu, on 2019-July-16, 12:58, said:

Maybe it should be unacceptable to all Americans but in reality it may only be unacceptable to about 60% of Americans, not much more.


New polling indicates Republicans actually like Trump more following racist tweet controversy

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A new poll indicates why GOP members are reluctant to chastise the president. Although a USA Today/Ipsos poll found that a majority of people, 68 percent, saw Trump’s tweets as offensive, there was a stark partisan divide: 93 percent of Democrats and 68 percent of independents found the tweet offensive, while only 37 percent of Republicans did, according to the poll, which was released on Wednesday. Meanwhile, 57 percent of Republicans said they agreed with Trump’s tweets, while only 7 percent of Democrats agreed.


57% of Republicans in the poll agreed with Dennison's tweets (another article said the one third strongly agreed). You can make your own conclusions from these numbers.
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#13191 User is offline   y66 

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Posted 2019-July-19, 04:58

Guest post from Matt Yglesias at Vox.

Trump’s racism is part of his larger con

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On Wednesday evening, President Donald Trump traveled to North Carolina to arouse the faithful by reiterating his racist crusade of the moment — a campaign to drive Rep. Ilhan Omar out of the country and back to Somalia, a country she left when she was 6 years old.

The rally was disgusting and shocking, but not surprising to those who’d read the weekend volley of racist tweets that initiated this particular news cycle nor to those who recall the 2016 campaign’s Muslim ban, the blood libels about “the caravan” that stalked the 2018 midterms, or anything else from Trump’s long and sordid history of racial demagoguery.

But if you want to really understand American politics in the summer of 2019, it makes sense to tune out the carnival barker’s antics for a moment and consider a plaintive memo issued earlier on Wednesday by Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen, and Katz — one of America’s top business law firms.

The memo made the case to clients that Wachtell’s expertise in regulatory compliance and white-collar defense is still important, even though many buyers of legal services may be inclined to think that rich companies don’t much need lawyers anymore. That’s because under Trump there’s been a “significant drop over the past two years in both the number of white-collar prosecutions and the scale of corporate fines and penalties.”

Earlier this week, the White House formally stated its plan to veto Democrats’ proposed increase in the federal minimum wage. And the New York Times reported that Trump’s newly installed acting secretary of labor is expected to “push through a sweeping anti-union agenda and coordinate his actions with the president’s political team.”

It’s wrong to characterize the racist incitement as a “distraction” since it is important on its own terms. But it is worth understanding that there is a controversial aspect of the Trump administration that he is happy to talk about — the racist aspect — and then there is a whole other set of controversies lurking hidden below the water line that Trump doesn’t like to talk about.

In the fight Trump wants to have, he casts himself as a champion of the typical white American Christian who is beset by various alien forces and politically correct elites. But when you bring the entire iceberg into view, you see a version of Trump that is much more reflective of Trump’s entire business career — a scam artist who profits off the misplaced trust of his fans just as much as anything else.

Politico reporter Tim Alberta’s new book American Carnage was released earlier this month and details what many are characterizing as Trump’s “takeover” of the GOP.

It’s an excellent book where Alberta uses the depth of his reporting to really bring the receipts and show the extent to which, until he beat Hillary Clinton, many of the people who are now his most loyal allies were deeply skeptical of his fitness for office.

“We’re not going to let Donald Trump dismantle the Bill of Rights,” Mick Mulvaney, a far-right House member from South Carolina told Alberta in 2016. “For five and half years, every time we got to the floor and try to push back against an overreaching president, we get accused of being partisan at best and racist at worst. When we do it against a Republican president, maybe people will see it was a principled objection in the first place.”

Today, Mulvaney is White House chief of staff, and people can clearly see that there never was a principled objection at all.

But what many people miss about this turnaround is it’s not a case of Trump over-awing or hypnotizing once-skeptical Republicans. What changed is that conservative movement leaders used to be afraid that Trump would be disloyal to their priorities.

They feared, in short, that his rhetorical gestures of economic populism — he promised a higher minimum wage, a big infrastructure bill, a universal health care plan, and even higher taxes on the rich — would be real. It turns out, however, that Trump was just lying about almost all of that stuff.

In exchange for deciding that he doesn’t care whether or not Trump shreds the bill of rights, Mulvaney now, according to an excellent team of Washington Post reporters, “has built what one senior administration official called ‘his own fiefdom’ centered on pushing conservative policies — while mostly steering clear of the Trump-related pitfalls that tripped up his predecessors by employing a ‘Let Trump be Trump’ ethos.”

Mulvaney stays away from the trade, national security, and immigration portfolios and in exchange has carte blanche to run the bulk of domestic policy for the administration — largely free of any kind of public scrutiny. And imbued with strong ideological convictions while encumbered by few constrains, he’s free to enact consequential and unpopular decisions on a strikingly broad range of topics — from overruling the Health and Human Services secretary’s ban the use of fetal tissue in medical research, to the looming anti-labor agenda at the Labor Department, to reviving a proposal to enact a gigantic tax cut for rich stock market investors through administrative fiat.

The upshot of Trump administration policymaking — beginning with Paul Ryan’s speakership, continuing under Mulvaney’s operation of the executive machinery now that Democrats run the House, and of course extending into the Federalist Society domination of the judiciary — is to completely neuter or dismantle the institutions of government that are supposed to check the ability of the wealthy and powerful to run roughshod over the rest of us. Polluters can pollute more, scamsters can scam more, bankers can go back to running the risks that blew up the global economy, and no legislation that would impair the privileges of the powerful can pass.

It’s not exactly that the Trump Show is fake and Mulvaney’s operation is the real government, but it’s impossible to understand why the Trump Show we see on stage works without appreciating what’s happening behind the scenes and who benefits from it.


On Monday, Brian Schwartz of CNBC reported that “Trump, Republican National Committee turn to titans of industry to help raise over $100 million in second quarter.”

That massive haul of financial cash comes in part from people who backed Trump in 2016. But it also features big bundles of cash from donors who supported other GOP candidates in the 2016 primary and then stayed aloof from Trump. It includes people like Stephen Rosenberg, CEO of the real estate investment partnership Greystone. Rosenberg backed Hillary Clinton in 2016, but wrote a $360,600 check to the Trump reelection campaign — and I’m guessing it’s not because he appreciates the way Trump drives liberal elites wild with his blunt talk.

Trump’s signature tax bill didn’t pay for itself as promised or lead to a massive surge in business investment, but it did boost bank profits to record levels. And it spurred a massive series of stock buybacks that benefitted rich people who own lots of stock and corporate executives with stock-linked compensation packages. He’s approving a Sprint/T-Mobile merger that will raise cellphone plan prices for consumers, repealed net neutrality regulations, and in one of his first acts decided to allow internet service providers to sell private user data to advertising companies.

Under Trump, decades of steady progress on non-climate air pollution have finally been reversed, and his administration is hard at work writing new rules that would increase water pollution levels as well.

Beyond acts of formal deregulation, he’s scaled back on enforcement of existing laws so much that law firms seem to be panicking about the possibility that some clients won’t bother hiring them anymore.

This agenda, no less than Trump’s racism, is an absolute disaster for America’s immigrants and communities of color who are generally lower-income and more vulnerable to corporate abuses and pollution than more privileged people.

But critically, it is also an absolute disaster for the vast majority of white people. There are simply very few people who benefit from a combination of more pollution and less economic competition, and there’s no way for the tax cutting to balance that out unless you’re part of the tiny minority of the public that derives the majority of its income from stock ownership.


Trump’s politics of racial division are not particularly popular — his approval ratings are worse than those of any prior president at this point in his term except Jimmy Carter — but it’s still true that framing Trump as a symbol of white privilege is almost certainly more favorable to him than framing him as a person whose governance has concrete material implications for Americans of all ethnic backgrounds.

Democrats can’t live in the Trump Show

An anonymous House Democrat went to CNN’s Jake Tapper on Wednesday to complain that the Trump versus Squad narrative was preventing Democrats from talking about their more popular agenda of jobs and health care. This critique makes sense, but if you take it seriously, the people to emulate are the Squad members themselves. Rather than whining off the record to prominent journalists, they are actually out there talking about jobs and health care.

Rep. Ilhan Omar has born more of the brunt of Trump’s racism than anyone else, and while she’s certainly not going to ignore that reality, the main focus of her political activity is still initiatives that she believes will help people in concrete ways.

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Rep. Ilhan Omar ✔ @Ilhan

“The function, the very serious function of racism is distraction. It keeps you from doing your work." -Toni Morrison

I am not going to let them distract. Today I am going to do the work the people of Minnesota sent me to do and vote to #RaiseTheWage to $15 an hour.

And this afternoon, I am going to return to my district and talk to my constituents about how I am working to guarantee quality health care for them with @RepJayapal.

The biggest challenge that House Democrats face in focusing the dialogue on material issues is not the Squad at all, but moderate members whose objections are the reason legislative action on the minimum wage had been delayed so much.

Nonetheless, it’s promising that Democrats of all factions seem to broadly recognize that an electoral message of dwelling on symbolic racism is less promising than one that highlights concrete concerns. The larger challenge is to actually make that happen in the face of a media landscape that is heavily tilted in favor of the Trump Show. It’s much easier to play and replay clips of Trump saying something outrageous than to try to explain the details of a regulatory action.

And it’s easy for a dialogue on racism to swiftly descend into intramural sniping between liberals and leftists and NeverTrumpers about exactly who objected to what when and in the right ways. By contrast, virtually nobody is going to stand up and publicly defend the idea that it’s good that under Trump’s watch the air is becoming more toxic and that corporate criminals are getting off so easily that their lawyers may be facing unemployment.

But racism’s function in American politics has been in part to serve as a kind of scam. The Jim Crow South had the lowest living standards for white people of any American region alongside the even lower standards for African Americans. And Trump is nothing if not a connoisseur of cons and scams.

If you lose all hope, you can always find it again -- Richard Ford in The Sportswriter
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#13192 User is offline   y66 

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Posted 2019-July-19, 06:33

Here's David Leonhardt at NYT discussing the perverse politics of medical spending. Excerpts:

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During the long debate over the Affordable Care Act a decade ago, the Obama administration was one of the only forces for fiscal conservatism — that is, trying to hold down health care spending. Congressional Republicans could have pushed for cost-saving measures, but instead they just opposed any effort to insure the uninsured. Many congressional Democrats, especially in the House, had no interest in policies to hold down spending.

Now that the Obama administration is gone, an important part of the health care law seems likely to die: the Cadillac tax. Had it gone into effect, the tax would have applied to expensive insurance plans — that is, those with relatively few restrictions — as a way of encouraging companies and workers to use more efficient plans. A few years ago, though, Congress delayed it, and on Wednesday the House voted to repeal it. The Senate seems likely to follow. Being in favor of unconstrained health spending is politically easy, even though it’s bad policy.

Labor unions are probably the best example of the perverse politics of medical spending. Unions have always opposed the Cadillac tax, out of fear that it will deny needed medical care to their members. As a result, the unions have ended up effectively pushing for expensive health care plans that quietly pinch their members’ paychecks.

The sharp rise of health spending in recent decades is one reason that wage increases have been so weak. As Paul N. Van de Water, a health care expert at the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, told Abby Goodnough of The Times, the tax was “one of the A.C.A.’s most important cost-containment measures” and could have led to pay increases.

“Rather than killing or delaying the Cadillac tax, Democrats should be trying to make it operational. The tax would raise revenue, lower costs, increase the efficiency of the tax code and give the Obamacare individual market its best chance at success,” Karl W. Smith wrote for Bloomberg Opinion. “Instead, Democrats have set up that market for more turmoil.”

Sarah Kliff, then of Vox, explained in 2015 how the threat of the Cadillac tax was already holding down health costs. “Opposition is getting fiercer because the tax is working,” she wrote.

For the other side of the argument, see Janet Trautwein, who works at an insurance industry trade group, or Stan Dorn, a consumer advocate.

If you lose all hope, you can always find it again -- Richard Ford in The Sportswriter
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#13193 User is offline   jjbrr 

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Posted 2019-July-19, 09:29

View PostZelandakh, on 2019-July-18, 14:09, said:

Sorry Chas, but, what?! You do not see anything related to colour from the comment "go back to where you came from" aimed at American citizens from immigrant families of colour from an American citizen of a white immigrant family who is married to a woman from a white immigrant family? Really? Seriously? If that is really your position you might just make it to being the very first person on my BBF ignore list because you would absolutely not exist to me. Supporting racism is itself a form of racism. Every educated person should know to condemn these tweets and the continuing follow-up coming from the WH.

lol, zel. what is this faux indignation? as if racism and trolling hasn't been chas's schtick all along? i can't believe for a second that you've actually missed this part of the thread until now.

and if any of your reaction is actually genuine, which i obviously don't believe at all, does it concern you that BBO endorses Chas as a host of their platform?
OK
bed
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#13194 User is offline   Chas_P 

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Posted 2019-July-19, 18:04

View Posthrothgar, on 2019-July-18, 03:40, said:

a racist cracker like yourself

Quote


Once upon a time in the world of cable news, a guest or host or anchor calling anyone a racist would have considerable impact.
From what we've seen this week, when it comes to that word, those days are long gone. A person simply can't turn on the news or scroll Twitter for even more than a minute before hearing the word "racist" or "racism."

For example, CNN and MSNBC said the word "racist" more than 1,100 times from Sunday to Tuesday, according to a tally conducted by Grabien Media, an online media production and news prep service.

The count, which doesn't include on-screen graphics commonly known as chyrons, came two days after President Trump in a Sunday tweet said four Democratic congresswomen should "go back" to their home countries. All four congresswomen are U.S. citizens, members of minority groups and three were born in the U.S.
The president, and his GOP allies on Capitol Hill, have underscored that his argument is simply an ideological one based on the four congresswomen, dubbed "the squad." What he argues is their collective embrace of pro-socialism and therefore anti-American, anti-Israeli, anti-Semitic polices.

Some critics in the media and on the Democratic side, along with a handful of Republicans, argue the opposite: The president's comments about the squad are naked racism. He's a fascist. He's mentally unstable. He's a 21st-century Hitler. In this insane climate, this kind of rhetoric is all perfectly acceptable — and has existed since Trump announced his candidacy.

Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) put things in proper perspective on the watering down of the racism charge against anyone with an "R" next to their name.

"Something I have learned: If you are a Republican nominee for President – or President – you will be accused of being a racist," Graham tweeted earlier this week. "[Rep.] John Lewis (D-Ga.) compared John McCain’s campaign to being like that of George Wallace. It comes with the territory unfortunately."
That's 100 percent correct. McCain was attacked in the 2008 presidential campaign as being a grumpy, get-off-my-lawn racist running against then-Sen. Barack Obama.
As for 2012 nominee Mitt Romney, who bent over backward to make himself more likable to Democrats and the press alike, he also was accused of "stoking the racial politics of yesteryear."

Everything seems to be racist or soaked in racism these days, even the 1969 Apollo 11 moon landing.

"America may have put the first man on the moon, but the Soviet Union sent the first woman, the first Asian man, and the first black man into orbit — all years before the U.S. would follow suit," wrote the New York Times on Thursday in a piece marinated in identity politics titled, "How the Soviets Won the Space Race for Equality."
But the Times' perspective on the Apollo moon mission pales in comparison to the Washington Post's on Tuesday.

"The culture that put men on the moon was intense, fun, family-unfriendly, and mostly white and male," opined the Post.
There's an old children's book we've all read called "The Boy Who Cried Wolf."

Now we're seeing it again — and again, and again. Thousands of times in the past week we've heard or read the word "racist" or have seen it blatantly implied.

Call it, "The Media That Cried Wolf."

And we all know what happened to the boy who cried wolf too often: People stopped listening.





We could sit here and trade insults for awhile, but I'm really not interested. I'm taking Mark Twain's advice.

#13195 User is offline   jjbrr 

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Posted 2019-July-19, 21:36

Chas: "No, ma'am. He's a decent family man, citizen that I just happen to have disagreements with on fundamental issues, and that's what this campaign's all about"
OK
bed
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#13196 User is offline   y66 

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Posted 2019-July-20, 07:16

From The Joy of Hatred by Jamelle Bouie at NYT:

Quote

The chanting was disturbing and the anger was frightening, but what I noticed most about the president’s rally in Greenville, N.C., on Wednesday night was the pleasure of the crowd.

His voters and supporters were having fun. The “Send her back” chant directed at Representative Ilhan Omar of Minnesota was hateful but also exuberant, an expression of racist contempt and a celebration of shared values.

This dynamic wasn’t unique to the event. It’s been a part of Trump’s rallies since 2015. Both he and his crowds work from a template. He rants and spins hate-filled tirades; they revel in the transgressive atmosphere. The chants are their mutual release. Sometimes he basks in them.

To watch raucous crowds of (mostly) white Americans unite in frenzied hatred of a black woman — to watch them cast her as a cancer on the body politic and a threat to a racialized social order — is to see the worst of our past play out in modern form.

[Jamelle Bouie will answer your questions about this column on Twitter on Tuesday at 2:30 p.m. Eastern: @jbouie.]

To be clear, the Trump rally was not a lynch mob. But watching the interplay between leader and crowd, my mind immediately went to the mass spectacles of the lynching era. There’s simply no way to understand the energy of the event — its hatred and its pleasures — without looking to our history of communal racial violence and the ways in which Americans have used racial others, whether native-born or new arrivals, as scapegoats for their lost power, low status or nonexistent prosperity. And in that period, one event stands out: an 1893 lynching in Paris, Tex., where Henry Smith, a mentally disabled black teenager, was burned alive.

The 17-year-old Smith, “generally considered a harmless, weak-minded fellow,” according to Ida B. Wells-Barnett in “The Red Record: Tabulated Statistics and Alleged Causes of Lynchings in the United States,” had been accused of the rape and murder of 3-year-old Myrtle Vance, the daughter of the local sheriff. The white community of Paris believed the murder was retaliation for an earlier arrest by the sheriff, and the accusation of rape was added, in Wells-Barnett’s words, “to inflame the public mind so that nothing less than immediate and violent death would satisfy the populace.”

On the day of the lynching, an estimated 10,000 people crowded along Paris’s main street to witness the killing. Smith was bound to a float and paraded across town in a theatrical performance meant to emphasize his guilt. The audience jeered and chanted, cursed and gave the rebel yell. “Fathers, men of social and business standing, took their children to teach them how to dispose of Negro criminals,” a witness to the event said. “Mothers were there, too, even women whose culture entitles them to be among the social and intellectual leaders of the town.” Around noon, Smith was tortured, doused with kerosene and lit ablaze, immolated for the crowd’s enjoyment.

It was part carnival, part spectacle and part ritual. Smith was accused of something greater than a mere crime. He was accused of violating a sacred moral order — of defiling the white home and white society. “In the minds of many white southerners,” the historian Amy Louise Wood writes in “Lynching and Spectacle: Witnessing Racial Violence in America, 1890—1940,” “black men came to personify the moral corruption that they believed to be the root cause of social disorder.” Lynching, then, “acted as more than a form of political terror that restored white dominance against the threat of black equality.” It also became a “divinely sanctioned retribution for black ‘sin’ that threatened not only white authority but white purity and virtue.”

In a 1933 essay, “Marxism and the Negro Problem,” W.E.B Du Bois tried, as the title suggests, to adapt the theories and analysis of Karl Marx for the American experience. “While Negro labor in America suffers because of the fundamental inequities of the whole capitalistic system,” he argued, “the lowest and most fatal degree of its suffering comes not from the capitalists but from fellow white laborers.” It is white labor, he continued, that “deprives the Negro of his right to vote, denies him education, denies him affiliation with trade unions, expels him from decent houses and neighborhoods, and heaps upon him the public insults of open color discrimination.”

Later, in his 1935 book, “Black Reconstruction in America,” Du Bois would expand on this idea, rooting white racism in a collective bargain of sorts. “It must be remembered that the white group of laborers, while they received a low wage, were compensated in part by a sort of public and psychological wage,” he wrote, outlining the ways in which this “public and psychological” wage strengthened ordinary white Americans’ attachment to a system that ultimately exploited them too:

Quote

They were admitted freely with all classes of white people to public functions, public parks, and the best schools. The police were drawn from their ranks, and the courts, dependent upon their votes, treated them with such leniency as to encourage lawlessness. Their vote selected public officials, and while this had small effect upon the economic situation, it had great effect upon their personal treatment and the deference shown them. White schoolhouses were the best in the community, and conspicuously placed, and they cost anywhere from twice to ten times as much per capita as the colored schools. The newspapers specialized on news that flattered the poor whites and almost utterly ignored the Negro except in crime and ridicule.

When this wage was threatened — by black social mobility and economic success, by black political action, by interracial contact that challenged the boundaries of caste — the response was violence. Not just as punishment but, as the lynching of Henry Smith demonstrates, as a communal defense of the existing social order. This ability to engage in state-sanctioned extrajudicial violence was both a kind of wage and a means to collect it, which tied white communities together in a shared experience of rage, righteous anger and joy.


It is important to take history on its own terms. We shouldn’t conflate the past with the present, but we should also be aware of ideas and experiences that persist through time. A political rally centered on the denunciation of a prominent black person demands reference to our history of communal, celebratory racism. It’s critical for placing the event in context, and it can help us understand the dynamic between the president and his base.

If Trump has an unbreakable bond with his supporters, it’s because he gives them permission to express their sense of siege. His rhetoric frees them from the mores and norms that keep their grievance in check. His rallies — his political carnivals — provide an opportunity to affirm their feelings in a community of like-minded individuals.

“He gets us. He’s not a politician, and he’s got a backbone,” a woman who attended a recent “Women for Trump” kickoff event in Pennsylvania told The Philadelphia Inquirer. “He’s not afraid to say what he thinks. And what he says is what the rest of us are thinking.”

If you lose all hope, you can always find it again -- Richard Ford in The Sportswriter
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#13197 User is online   hrothgar 

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Posted 2019-July-20, 08:39

View PostChas_P, on 2019-July-19, 18:04, said:

rs
"Something I have learned: If you are a Republican nominee for President – or President – you will be accused of being a racist," Graham tweeted



FWIW, I think that Graham is correct. Where we differ is that I believe that this is a sign that the bulk of America is actually making some small progress in this area and is now willing to call out Republicans for 50+ years of race baiting.

If you don't want to have a Republican nominee for President called out as a racist, perhaps the party might consider not choosing a man who

1. Uses expressions like nigger and kike in everyday conversation
2. Claims that judges of Mexican and muslim descent can not be allowed to adjudicate trials in which he is involved
3. Didn't get fined large amounts of money for refusing to rent / sell properties to African Americans
4. Doesn't label Africa as being full of shithole countries
5. ...
Alderaan delenda est
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#13198 User is offline   Winstonm 

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Posted 2019-July-20, 11:17

Headline from The Atlantic:

Quote

‘It Makes Us Want to Support Him More’
Amid a convulsive week in American politics, at one of the darkest rallies Donald Trump has ever held, his base showed up in force to tell the president he’s done nothing wrong.


I sometimes often lately ponder the notion that the biggest mistake the U.S. ever made was in allowing the confederate soldiers and their bigoted leaders to reconcile instead of hanging them all for treason.
"Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere." Black Lives Matter.
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#13199 User is offline   kenberg 

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Posted 2019-July-20, 11:58

With regard to the tweets of a week ago: I keep thinking surely there is no place to hide, I keep finding I am wrong. Let's look at a tweet:

"So interesting to see ‘Progressive’ Democrat Congresswomen, who originally came from countries whose governments are a complete and total catastrophe, the worst, most corrupt and inept anywhere in the world,”


Ok: "women" not :woman", Countries" not "country", "are" not "is". This is plural not singular. Surely he is speaking of more than one, and without any reason to think otherwise, we can conclude he is speaking of all four. One, Omar, came to this country as a teen, the others were born here.


My father came to this country when he was 10. No one ever, in the heat of argument or otherwise, suggested that he was less than a full American, no one ever suggested he should go back to where he came from, there were never any chants of send him back. Indeed we do not do that. A friend who immigrated from the Soviet Union once told me that when he was choosing where to go he thought that in some countries he would always be seen as the Russian guy, here he expected to soon be seen as an American like other Americans. And yes, that is the result he had.


Is there really some other way to interpret the tweet, other than "Just look at them, obviously they don't belong here"? We have four women, three of them born here, one of them coming here as a teen, all being told that they are from another country. They don't belong here. My father, and my friend, both are white. They are accepted as belonging here, where they came from is not ever even thought of. These four women are not white, and they are being told that they do not belong here. What else is there to say? Yes, I think "racism" is too often charged. But here? What else would you call it?


As for Lindsey Graham, this whole thing has left him incoherent. Well, they are communists. Good God, this is where I came in when I was first taking an interest in politics long ago. At some point a person has to accept reality about our president. Take the bull by the tail and face the situation as W.C. Fields once said.
Ken
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#13200 User is offline   Winstonm 

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Posted 2019-July-20, 12:32

The problem is not Trump but the millions who find his message appealing, who band together at rallies, enraptured by a common embrace of hatred of "the other".
"Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere." Black Lives Matter.
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