Friday, February 15, 2019

Stefanik Hypocrisy Letter

I'm responding to Rep. Stefanik's call for Rep. Omar to be removed from the House Foreign Relations Committee. Ms. Omar made the tweet, "It's all about the Benjamins baby" in reference to AIPAC. I'm wondering why a freshman member of Congress should be held to a higher standard than House Minority Leader McCarthy. He tweeted, "We cannot allow Soros, Steyer and Bloomberg to BUY this election" in November 2018. Anti-Semitic tropes are acceptable about Jewish liberals, but not lobbyist organizations for Israel? Ms. Omar has apologized, Mr. McCarthy hasn't. Speaker Pelosi, "A newcomer to Congress has apologized for her remarks; it took them, what, 13 years to notice Steve King?" Congrats to Republicans for finally mustering a censure of him.

Slander of George Soros is a cottage industry among Republicans. President Trump suggested Soros might be funding caravans from Central America. The shooter at the synagogue in Pennsylvania latched onto conspiracy theories involving the Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society and caravans. The president is only responsible for spreading nonsense, of course. That House resolution Rep Stefanik supports condemning anti-Semitic hatred is going to be working overtime in the GOP. Is there one for Native Americans so we can condemn Mr. Trump for his continual use of "Pocahontas" to refer to Sen. Warren?

I suggest that our rep focus her efforts on the beam in her own party's eye. Democrats criticized Rep. Omar and she apologized. Has there been the slightest contrition ever from a Republican politician?  Just crickets there.

Thursday, January 24, 2019

Response to Carlton Tucker

Who I keep wanting to refer to as Tucker Carlson.


I'm replying to Carlton Tucker who notes that, "some...on the left, want to blame the president for the interruption in government services." I would think that's all of us on the left. And we call it a shutdown. So does the president. He said he would "shut down the government" if he didn't get money for his wall, a rare episode of honesty. In addition to quotes, the internet has videos of campaign rallies with Mr. Trump asking, "Who's paying for the wall?" The crowds would call back, "Mexico!" There's not much argument over who's supposed to be paying.

The president's latest argument for the monument to Trumpism is that it's going to stop all the drugs from coming in. It won't. The Coast Guard makes over half the seizures. Here's a quote from Rep. DeFazio (D- Oregon), "If the president really wants to talk about intercepting drugs, and he wants to talk about real border security, he should be talking about giving more resources to the United States Coast Guard, and not stiffing them on their paychecks, and not making them fly ancient helicopters and use 50-year-old cutters." The president could at least stand up to Ann Coulter and Rush Limbaugh and end the shutdown so that branch of the military could get paid.

The $5 billion he wants for the shrine to his presidency would go a long way toward supporting drug interdiction at sea and providing customs agents to stop them at legal points of entry where most of the bulk of them come in. Democrats know that. The president's new chief of staff does, too. He called the border wall "simplistic" and "absurd and almost childish."

Saturday, January 12, 2019

Thursday, January 10, 2019

Man the Trebuchets!

Just gotta link to this Dana Milbank piece.


"Some have suggested a barrier is immoral," he said, but it's really an expression of "love."

He has a point. The trouble with the wall isn't that it's evil, but that it's medieval.

If the plan is to bet the United States' national security on the siege-warfare technology of the ancient and medieval worlds, which is what a wall does, then our strategy has to be much more Byzantine.

Lives Well-Lived

I love a good obit. It's sad to see these folks pass, but I do love to read about lives well-lived.

Samuel Snipes

Samuel Snipes, a white lawyer who held off an angry mob while representing the first Black family to move into the all-white development of Levittown, has died. He was 99.

Snipes died Dec. 31 at his family farm in Morrisville, according to family members.

In 1957, he represented Daisy and Bill Myers when the Black couple and their three young children quietly moved into Levittown.

“He felt they had every right to live there,” said David Kushner, author of the 2009 book “Levittown” that explored the ordeal. “He played a pivotal role in helping the first African-American family move into Levittown and left a really wonderful legacy in that regard, in taking on the system and doing what was right.”

And got 99 well-deserved years. Sounds like that could've gone otherwise.

Howell Begle

Howell Begle, a Washington lawyer who found a second career crusading on behalf of underpaid black R&B stars of the 1950s and ’60s, leading to industrywide royalty reform and the creation of the charitable Rhythm & Blues Foundation, died on Dec. 30 at a hospital in Lebanon, N.H. He was 74.

His wife, Julie Eilber, said the cause was injuries he sustained in a skiing accident on Dec. 24. 

Way too young, but he lived long enough to untarnish the reputation of lawyers. There are some very nice ones.

Tuesday, January 1, 2019

New Year's Obituary

This may be the greatest, most inspiring thing I'll read all year.


And for good measure he lived to be 108.