Discussion in 'world politics, current affairs and news' started by Yossarian, May 1, 2017.
Yup. I tune most of it out though.
I'm getting good at scrolling real fast...
The real racists are the ones who object to black prisoners being used for forced labour so that a rich, decades later destined to be 'woke', white couple were spared the horror of cleaning up after themselves or paying someone to do the work.
She didn't even campaign in Wisconsin!
I have an idea for a drinking game.
Every time one of the crew mentions Clinton on this Trump thread, the rest of us have to take a drink.
We'll all be falling down drunk in no time.
Soviet Veteran Who Met With Trump Jr. Is a Master of the Dark Arts
On FiveThityEight Is Bernie Sanders Really The Democratic Front-Runner?
Nate Silver & co throwing around 2020 Dem candidates. Interesting analogy with the Pauls.
They don't get into it but it's quite possible the Dems won't get it together to beat Trump in 2020. The Trump Presidency also highlights something obvious. A President needs support in the Senate and particularly Congress to do much domestically. Trump ran against the GOP establishment as much as Clinton but is saddled with many of their policies. In reality the billionaire scam artiste is fine with a lot of that but what if he'd been sincere? He's so divisive he's proved repellent to the Dems. He came into office as a Lame Duck. The Dems are tilting liberal but an awful lot are pretty conservative. The GOP is a smaller tent increasingly going radically rightward and willing to flirt with really unpopular policies like Trumpcare. There's an awful lot of very Red states and GOP Reps tend to fear primary challenges from the right backed by folks like the Kochs and Mercers. Right wing candidates often did better than Trump despite Trump. There's a tendency to stasis as there's little scope for the bipartisan accommodation the US system is designed to expect. The consensus that Obama promised and conspicuously failed to deliver. And policies he pushed through without that are now being feed into the meat grinder by Trump while the GOP eye up even LBJ era stuff. Hope won elections but was not a strategy that delivered change. How would a sincerely Social Democrat POTUS who's alienated much of the Dem establishment fair in this system?
Truly horrific stuff is being built upon what was already a pretty horrible system. I have picked out a few but the whole thing is worth reading to understand the absolute barbarity of it.
Here are the hidden horrors in the Senate GOP's new Obamacare repeal bill
Part of the problem on focusing on civility policing, norms, the Russia stuff and personality driven politics is that there seems to be very little discussion of the particularities of how people are going to be hurt, impoverished and in many cases actually killed by this legislation.
The media alternates between Russiagate and Trumpcare. There's still some hope the Repub senate won't be able to get their shit together to pass it. I gather they've got it set so the suffering and dying of the low income victims will be phased in and won't really be felt until after the 2018 or even 2020 elections. Majority leader McConnell is an evil genius at parliamentary shenanigans.
This just in: The vote has been delayed due to McCain's recovery from surgery. They can't afford to lose one vote.
McCain’s Surgery Will Delay Senate Votes on Health Care Bill
In The Atlantic Why Do Republicans Suddenly Hate College So Much?
Trump's other innovation was to acknowledge and celebrate less educated voters. Not to see this as a social trap that needs fixing as aspirational US politicians usually have but a path to power. The future (or reclaimed past) Trump promised was one that was bright for folks who didn't finish high school. A big lie that can harm people but it's a cunningly crafted one.
Cites that Pew poll posted above. What I noticed there was younger, poorer GOP voters weren't so attracted to this anti-education trend. It's older, better off and better educated Republicans who seem to be most down on education and set on pulling up the ladder they climbed. The reverse of their peers amongst Dems. That might reflect a knee jerk loathing of snooty liberals and all they advocate for amongst their conservative peers who brushed up against them at college.
Fastest finger first!
On Politico The John Birch Society Is Back
It's some reboot even when facing a Commie deficit. Still fighting the Illumanti and the Council on Foreign Relations and the great evil of active government.
Links to an interesting paper Political Orientation Predicts Credulity Regarding Putative Hazards
Rinat Akhmetshin Reportedly Worked With Company That Made Trump Pee Dossier
by Faith Gates
Rinat Akhmetshin Reportedly Worked With Company That Made Trump Pee Dossier
Fake news ....dunno......but the prospect of pissgate raising its ugly head again...hehe...its like watching the political version of spinal tap playing itself out .....live..
..we are being spoiled ...no ..really..... far to much fun .......
Postwashington Melancholia | Richard Seymour on Patreon
I think Seymour is underselling it, we're well into the process of neoliberals sounding like Trump. See Macron's lamentation of African birthrates, Obama's references to the unentrepreneurial Slav, Clinton advisors who call for the 'KGB' to the bombed, Remainers who want to remove voting rights from Brexiters and centrist MPs who want to remove anonymity from social media accounts because they fear scrutiny and want to expose their critics who could then be pressured by hounding them from their jobs.
On The Resurgent This is Really Just Stupid
Having followed the ups and down of Trumps business career for decades I did think the man had some talent. He did appear a master of self promotion. The gold fixated gombeen man, a sleekit chiseler never giving a sucker an easy break. A walking embodiment of Devil take the hindmost American capitalism. His supporters were often attracted by the fairly daft idea that this bullshitting billionaire would be more capable than the time serving politicians they'd tired of. This theory isn't surviving contact with high office.
How did these people ever survive in the real estate business? You might think they were just entitled, wealthy twits playing monopoly badly with a slice of daddy's fortune.
This sad farce of squabbling mediocrities is what you get when you elect a chaotic Queens real estate guy who seems most comfortable with conspiracy theorists and 2nd rate hacks.
Despite the shit show and sleekit eagerness to betray Trump's favourability is only down 2% with GOP voters:
On Politico Don’t Compare Trump to Nixon. It’s Unfair to Nixon.
Nixon was a very calculating, intellectually curious and paranoid man sometimes disabled by rage. Trump does share the last two qualities. Even clever people are prone to mistakes when scared or angry. It's a great leveller and Trump seems to spend a lot of time turning puce.
Nixon during Watergate was covering up past behaviour that violated political norms even by his old hardball standards. He'd colluded with South Vietnam to disrupt peace talks during an election race. Something that very dirty player LBJ knew about but thought indecent to make public. Tricky Dicky knew that was out there and it rattled him into rash actions that led to the bungled Watergate break in. Trump has nothing like Nixon's depth as a politician. He's no respect for political norms and flaunts his transgressive qualities. He's quite happy with Don Jnr's willingness to collude with Russians and inept attempts to cover it up. It's quite likely he has a cupboard very full of shabby skeletons. But will there ever be anything he is actually ashamed of or that his indulgent supporters would disown him over? Meanwhile he'll be getting on with High Crimes & Misdemeanours as if it was just another day in the real estate business.
On Bloomberg Americans Feel Good About the Economy, Not So Good About Trump
Outside crisis situations Presidents have relatively little power over the immediate economy as that's the business of Congress. Factors like the price of oil or demographics have a bigger sway even than Congress. A President can set a direction as Reagan did in heading towards NAFTA. They can wreck things e.g. by abruptly pulling out of established trade agreement but even Trump has baulked at that. We're still basically dealing with the legacy economy of the last administration. Under Trump the stock market has been emboldened by all the signs that there will gravy for the upper percentiles and he is getting some good marks beyond his base (~36%) in some areas but he's losing people on the hottest domestic issue healthcare.
This provides some idea of the salience of issues for Americans:
Healthcare seems to be the in your face issue with bipartisan appeal but also a third rail. It's going to be magnified by the looming cancellation of Obamacare. The labour market, which isn't so bad in a lot of places, a distant second. Immigration and Climate Change are highly partisan polarising issues both clashing with jobs and powerful lobby groups. Do this poll at county level you'll get different answers but I suspect those top five issues would still dominate. I'm a bit surprised taxes rate so low as this always seemed really salient for Republicans. Americans do not seem close to being up in arms about trade.
I do wonder about the fifth of Americans still expecting bipartisan collaboration for the common good.
Half of America think it's possible for a Nth Korean Nuclear weapon to hit the United States? The only manage to find the ocean 50% of the time....
and they don't even have warheads in
It's an exaggerated fear but perhaps more rational than hysterically overrating the comparatively slight threat from IS. Folks who know about this stuff do think the capability to hit the US with a nuke could arrive in a few years and it's clear the North Koreans want it.
In The Diplomat North Korea's ICBM: A New Missile and a New Era
Goes on to point out the North Koreans don't seem to be especially irrational or suicidal. They probably won't nuke a US city just because Trump calls Kim Jong-un a fat kid who probably plays with himself nights.
Of course the odd thing is they asked about North Korea but not Russia. A peer adversary in nuclear terms the US is perhaps more liable to stumble into a nuclear conflict with. The strategy of rapid escalation to tactical nukes while waving city killing weapons described above is much like the latest Russian doctrine. A pretty mad flirting with winnable nuclear war rather than Mutually Assured Destruction. Not likely but deterrence's great weakness was always we'd bumble into genocidal warfare unintentionally. Particularly if you have a man in the Whitehouse who seems just as jittery and thin skinned a fucker as Kim Jong-un.
On The Cipher Brief The "Main Enemy": Russian Active Measures in the United States
Counter Intelligence people do tend to be very paranoid. Odd to think the conspiracy theory loving Team Trump may have been insufficiently wary when it comes to wealthy Russians bearing gifts.
Whether the chance of Nth Korean nuke hitting the US is now more or less likely to happen since the last test isn't the point. It's that more Americans are worried about this possibility than the near certainty of Russian hacking their elections AGAIN.
Putin has just discovered than for a insignificant amount of money and potentially zero repercussions he can do more damage to the USA in two years than in 40 years of the Cold War. It's a near as to a dead cert that unless the US radically overhauls its electoral system it could be irrevocably damaged.
That's the point I was making, not whether the North Korean threat was viable, but rather "why are you worrying about something that is likely to never happen, instead of freaking out over something that did happened, is still ongoing and is likely to be a massive problem in the future?
What does 'hacking their elections' mean? What proof do you have of this?
Maybe the FSB have found one of the KGB's old mind-control machines hidden in a basement of the Kremlin and dusted it off.
Trump wants everyone to hire Americans first.
He cuts number of visas for temporary help.
Companies start screaming that they can not operate without foreign workers.
Trump increases number of visas.
That makes no sense - force the companies to hire Americans.
Jed, here's how these sorts of investigations work.
The relevant authorities determine to investigate allegations of wrongdoing.
A process of discovery begins, wherein leads are followed, evidence is gathered and evaluated.
This process can take months or even years, because people who are involved in alleged wrongdoing, usually go to great lengths to cover their tracks.
And because in criminal or quasi criminal proceedings, the standard of proof required is proof beyond a reasonable doubt, those who will prosecute the case, must make sure all the i s are dotted and t s crossed, before going before a trier of fact.
So: asking for the proof at the beginning of the investigatory period, simply reveals a lack of understanding of why the investigatory period takes place.
There has to be reasonable suspicion to start an investigation in the first place. So what is it?
South Carolina May Prove a Microcosm of U.S. Election Hacking Efforts
There were nearly 150,000 attempts to penetrate the voter-registration system on Election Day 2016, State Election Commission says
It's behind a paywall, but reported here with a link to the full report from state the Election Commission.
I'm thinking now the actual truth is genuinely not important to Americans who voted Trump and are still devoted to him.
It's like over the past few decades, folks who now back Trump saw their cherished American ideal of "freedom" extended too far. That is, extended to people they don't think deserve it - people of colour, women, Lesbians and Gays, refugees, non-Christians, non-conformists, etc. They feared if others are gaining, they must be losing something. It was a piece of cake for Trump and GOP legislators to tap into the barely concealed rage.
They've re-defined "freedom" to something for them to enjoy almost exclusively, because "freedom" given to others = unacceptable threat to them. Heck, the idea autocracy probably sounds quite attractive with it's strong leadership, order, security and "stability." They're sensible enough to know that while there may be some inconveniences, they and others like them will always enjoy most of the freedoms they already have, in some way. Some may even expand - freedom of religion could become "freedom to live in a country governed by Christian principles. If they have faith, they'll be okay. People who won't be okay aren't their concern, but they might pray for their salvation.
If the 2018 or 2020 elections aren't "free and fair," it doesn't matter. It's God's will. Ultimate cop out.
As good an analysis as you'd expect.
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