After reading through a lot of the comments on my post about the various pointers to the obvious; namely, that Russia’s hacks were done with a mind to tilt the election toward Trump with Mitch McConnell’s blessing, I see some are misconstruing the emergency here. This is not about war with Russia. It’s about treasonous acts… Continue Reading →
President-elect Donald Trump dismissed as “ridiculous” reports that the CIA concluded that Russian hackers interfered with the U.S. election to help him win, saying Democrats put out the story as an excuse for their defeat. “I think it’s ridiculous. I think it is just another excuse,” Mr. Trump said in an interview on the “Fox News… Continue Reading →
We know the next president of the United States uses his powerful platform to take revenge on individual citizens. He attacked Alec Baldwin for parodying him on Saturday Night Live, threatened to cancel a contract with Boeing because its CEO questioned his trade policy and called a union leader “terrible” for pointing out Trump lied in his characterization of the Carrier deal.
We know he doesn’t understand or care about the most fundamental constitutional rights, after he threatened to revoke the citizenship of anyone who burned a flag. We know he’s suggested using the power of his office to go after the press for vigorously reporting on what he says and does. (Quote him, and he’ll call you a liar.)
Add it all up, and what do you see? A child who reacts to the slightest perceived attack with vicious vitriol. A vengeful president who is willing to violate basic rights. A government run by incompetents, racists, bullies and conspiracy-mongers.
It’s a formula for tragedy.
No one can predict the future – we learned that lesson the hard way a month ago. But if you were to imagine what impending American fascism would look like, you couldn’t place the pieces on the board any more neatly than they’ve been placed in the last year.
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But it would be pretty funny if it was:
A little bird informed me that some Trump critics have been reserving tickets for his upcoming gloat-fests, and – *gasp* – aren’t planning to attend. Thanks to the power of the Internet (and the collective rage of the majority of the country), this effort might leave quite a few seats empty for the remaining events. It might seem like a petty slight at first glance, but think about it: when Donald Trump takes the stage to remind everyone how fantastic he is, he might be yelling his boasts at an arena in which more than half of the seats are intentionally left empty. If there’s a better way to visually remind him (and anyone watching) that more than half of America rejects him, I can’t think of it.
Reservations for upcoming Trump events can be made – for free – on this website.
Geeze, I hate to hit you with this stuff first thing in the morning, but somebody’s gotta do it! Via Climate Change:
As President-elect Donald Trump continues to round out his cabinet and White House staff, his policies and priorities are coming more into focus.
All indications so far point to a bleak future for addressing climate change, or even recognizing it as one of the world’s largest challenges. A number of his cabinet nominees, political appointees and closest advisors are outright climate deniers while others have funded the denial of climate change or are lukewarm on accepting the science.
At best, climate action will likely take a backseat to other issues. At worst, there could be an all-out assault on the science, and as important, the funding that makes it possible.
To glean a clearer picture of where Trump’s administration stands and where it may be headed, we’ve created a list of his major cabinet and agency appointees as well as his senior advisors. We’ll continue to update this as appointments are made.
Go read it, but not if you puke easily.
Tom Price has some severe “fixes” for health insurance in America. NPR reports that Price’s plan offers fixed tax credits so people can buy their own insurance on the private market. The credit starts at $1,200 a year and rises with age – but unlike Ryan’s plan, it’s not adjusted for income. Everyone receives the same… Continue Reading →
Donald Trump is very upset about Jill Stein’s recount petition:
In addition to winning the Electoral College in a landslide, I won the popular vote if you deduct the millions of people who voted illegally
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 27, 2016
Serious voter fraud in Virginia, New Hampshire and California – so why isn't the media reporting on this? Serious bias – big problem!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 28, 2016
Presidents do not normally imply that their own win was illegitimate. But instead of ridiculing him and telling him to join the recount, we should be very wary. Because Trump is likely to use these groundless statements as a jumping-off point for national voter-suppression efforts. Congress will cooperate because Republicans love suppressing votes; just look at the laws they’ve set in place in every state. (Some allegedly “illegal” voting is always more important than others.)
Hard to believe? Trump has nominated Sen. Jeff Sessions for Attorney General, someone who is, at the very least, hostile to voting rights. As U.S. attorney in Alabama, Sessions targeted voter registration activists — who were later acquitted.
In case you were wondering where Trump got the idea that Hillary Clinton won the popular vote by “millions” of votes cast by non-citizens, you might look no further than Kris Kobach, the Kansas secretary of state who worked as a Trump adviser and has written voter suppression laws all over the country. Trump is considering him to head up the Department of Homeland Security, and in a picture taken last week, we saw Kobach with an outline stating “Stop Aliens From Voting.”
Kobach is the man promoting CrossCheck, a notoriously inaccurate voter database used to deny a half-million Americans the right to cast a ballot:
On Otterbein Avenue, I met Donald Webster, who, like most in his neighborhood, is African-American.
Crosscheck lists him registered in Ohio as Donald Alexander Webster Jr., while registered a second time as Donald Eugene Webster (no “Jr.”) in Charlottesville, Virginia. Webster says he’s never been a “Eugene” and has never been to Charlottesville. I explained that both he and his Virginia doppelgänger were subject to losing their ability to vote.
“How low can they go?” he asked. “I mean, how can they do that?”
They can. If we let them.
And finally, there’s senior counselor and White House strategist Stephen Bannon, former chairman of the white supremacist Breitbart News , and a man who has posited some disturbing ideas:
Ms. Jones, the film colleague, said that in their years working together, Mr. Bannon occasionally talked about the genetic superiority of some people and once mused about the desirability of limiting the vote to property owners.
“I said, ‘That would exclude a lot of African-Americans,’” Ms. Jones recalled. “He said, ‘Maybe that’s not such a bad thing.’ I said, ‘But what about Wendy?’” referring to Mr. Bannon’s executive assistant. “He said, ‘She’s different. She’s family.’”
So Bannon is not personally racist, according to several friends. He is simply willing to construct institutions that make life more difficult for non-white people to vote.
But I’m not. Every day looks worse for what’s left of our democracy:
I don’t actually have confidence that we will have a functional democracy by 2020. It’s entirely possible that historians, assuming the exist in a century, will see 2016 as the end of a period of American history where rights generally expanded. That’s because Trump, Giuliani, Sessions, Gingrich, Flynn, etc., etc., and most importantly huge chunks of the Republican base, simply do not respect the fundamental tenets of democracy and they are seeking to roll back two generation of social progress. Despite what I might have believed a mere few weeks ago, they are in fact reasonably likely to succeed. And I am disappointed in myself for not seeing this more clearly before the election. Democrats and liberals were holding on strictly to the presidency as a buffer between us and the apocalypse. Between gerrymandering, voter suppression, and a bloody ineffective DNC strategy to operate on the state level, Republicans had already grabbed most of the levers of government. And while Trump is uniquely bad in some ways, in many others, he really isn’t that much worse than your bog-standard mainstream Republican governing class such as Scott Walker, Rick Scott, Paul LePage, Rick Snyder, or, of course, Mike Pence.
All we really have in the end is massive resistance. That is where we are heading–acquiescence or resistance. You and I will all need to make our choices about whether we will stand up against oppression in ways that a lot of our ancestors did not stand up to Jim Crow, to Chinese Exclusion, to the Japanese internment camps, etc.