Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Heather Heyer

Kenneth Frazier:

Because we have no president.

Epistle to Reverend Puckey

I suspect the Methodist Church will soon change its policy on excommunication. 

Dear Reverend Puckey:

My name is Kevin Robbins and I attend Hudson Falls UMC. I’m writing because you and I disagree. This is in regards to a Facebook post put up by Kathi Cech and liked by you, disliked by me. I’m overlooking the notification I received in the comments that I can’t possibly be a Christian because I’m a liberal. You may not have seen that, and may or may not agree with those sentiments. But, you did click like on the Dinesh D’Souza quote.  If you’d care to respond, my e-mail is maxbaer@yahoo.com. I corresponded with Reverend Mudge and he informed me that I’m “engaged in a debate that is dividing all of the UMC.” I attempted to engage in a debate on Facebook without much success. No one wanted to discuss it.
D’Souza said: “The paradox of liberal tolerance is that it extends to Marxists, transsexuals and Islamic radicals – but not to conservatives or Christians.”
I’m curious what you find agreeable about the quote. How many living Marxists can you name? And how many liberals that are supporting them? The Russians took up kleptocracy around the time of Boris Yeltsin. Nicolas Maduro might be a Marxist, but I doubt many liberals are supporting him. Maybe Harry Belafonte and Sean Penn?  I’d say President Trump is giving him support by threatening him and rallying people to his side.    
I agree that we are tolerant toward transgender folks. What should we be? Hateful towards them? We liberals have company anyway. The brass at the Pentagon and some Republicans in Congress recently smacked down President Trump’s attempt to bigly discriminate toward transgender service members. But wait, wait; that’s not all. Some members of the Methodist Church are tolerant, too. A transgender person named M has recently been ordained as a deacon.
D’Souza insinuates that liberals are in league with ISIS and al-Qaeda. I would require some evidence of that scurrilous charge. We do support Muslims being able to practice their religion without being subjected to attacks like the recent one in Minnesota (and so many others). And why are they being attacked? Possibly because of hate-mongers like D’Souza. Actually, we support transgender folks not being attacked, as well. Would it be offensive if I said conservative Christian tolerance extends to the right-wing extremists in Virginia? I can already see it doesn’t extend to liberals. Why is it acceptable to push hatred of them?
Presumably some of my best friends are conservative Christians. I don’t bring my politics into church so I don’t know for sure. I’m not intolerant of conservative views or people who hold them. I am intolerant of bigots like D’Souza who use fallacious, straw man, nonsense arguments to spread hatred.

“Those who can make you believe absurdities, can make you commit atrocities.” – Voltaire.

Be Well,

Kevin Robbins

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

What's Good For Exxon is Good For Rex

I realize all administrations have engaged in realpolitik. Ask Matt Funiciello.

Every American president since World War II has believed that our nation benefits from the spread of economic and political freedom. Oppressive regimes are more likely to seek destabilizing weapons and to harbor terrorists. Democratic nations are more peaceful and more likely to engage in trade. Democratization (for the most part) cannot be imposed, but it can be encouraged — unless that great, defining national mission doesn’t fit in the PowerPoint presentation. 

Yes, off and on they've tried to encourage that sort of thing, too. And Trump and Tillerson?

Here is a story for Tillerson to consider, told to me by a United States senator who was in Africa confronting a leader about human rights abuses. At one point during their testy exchange, the (increasingly) oppressive ruler said, “Well, Trump is on my side.” The senator, to his credit, responded, “Trump doesn’t even know your name.” Which is probably true. But the impression that the United States no longer cares about human rights has filtered down to third-rate despots everywhere.

Eh, not so good

Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte met Monday with America's top diplomat, where he voiced solidarity with the U.S. amid global concerns over North Korea's nuclear program and angrily dismissed media questions about human rights abuses by his government.

As long as he's against North Korea. 

Would You Rather Be Eaten By a Shark or a Crocodile?

Or have Mike Pence as president? Or keep Deferment Donald?

(Trump’s) efforts — as bad as they might be — have been so far confined to the margins. Trump has not passed any major legislation or, for that matter, built any walls.

On the other hand, his most significant and appalling contribution has been to normalize lying as an ordinary tool of the presidency. He has ghettoized truth, confining it to something characterized as the lying and disloyal mainstream media. He lies for purpose and he lies just for the hell of it. His lying is such that it ought to be a mental ailment. Call him politically insane.

And sure that looks bad along with too many other things to mention.

His views, especially regarding social and cultural issues, are to the right of the right. He is famously antiabortion, recommends abstinence as the entire key to sex education and has taken the unique view that condoms are useless in AIDS prevention. As for global warming, back in 2000 he said it “is a myth.”

In 2002, Pence took to the floor of the House to declaim on evolution. Like many of its opponents, he misused the term “theory,” making it seem like a guess or a speculation. In science, a theory is an explanation of how things work. This is quite different from what Pence cited as a comparison — “that God created man in his own image.” That’s religion and not a theory — and that’s a fact.

And Cohen goes on to point out what a vile hypocrite Pence is for overlooking all the things that make Trump the most nihilistic bastard ever to walk the Earth.

Exploding Heads at SGFUMC

Some of my fellow members of the Methodist Church may wailing and gnashing their teeth soon. God, I hope so.

Hillary Clinton wants to preach. That’s what she told Bill Shillady, her longtime pastor, at a recent photo shoot for his new book about the daily devotionals he sent her during the 2016 campaign. Scattered bits of reporting suggest that ministry has always been a secret dream of the two-time presidential candidate: Last fall, the former Newsweek editor Kenneth Woodward revealed that Clinton told him in 1994 that she thought “all the time” about becoming an ordained Methodist minister. 

The ordination of Pastor Hillary would be either the first or second most likely thing to raise the blood pressure of the lib haters in South Glens Falls. This story was one I'd seen awhile back and it had slipped my increasingly decrepit mind. 

Barclay, a transgender person who identifies as neither male nor female and thus uses the pronoun “they,” was commissioned on Sunday as the first non-binary member of the clergy in the United Methodist Church.

There are some open-minded people in the church. Praise Jesus!

What's a Russian Bot?

So, I've seen them mentioned lately and hadn't really got around to finding out. One of several reasons to link to this story. And may I say "link to this story" makes a great place to put the link. Oh yeah, Russian bots.

“The president doesn’t know whether it’s a Russian bot or not,” said Clint Watt, a former FBI agent and fellow at the Foreign Policy Research Institute, using the term for a fake Twitter account pretending to represent a real person and created to influence public opinion or promote a particular agenda. 

Of course the president doesn't know. Sadly, he knows even less than I do. What else is in this story? Nicole Mincey. Well, sort of, since she doesn't exist. At least not in the persona Trump knows her. 

On Saturday, President Trump tweeted his gratitude to a social-media super-fan, ­Nicole Mincey, magnifying her praise of him to his 35 million followers. 

Here’s the problem: There is no evidence the Twitter feed belongs to someone named Nicole Mincey. And the account, according to experts, bears a lot of signs of a Russia-backed disinformation campaign.

(H)e may have become Exhibit A of the foreign government’s influence by elevating a suspected Russia-connected ­social-media user — part a sophisticated campaign to exacerbate disputes in U.S. politics and gain the attention of the most powerful tweeter in the world.

It's gonna be a miracle if we survive the next 3 and a half years.

“As a Republican, it raises questions for some on the right who obviously have a difference of opinion on someone like Gen. McMaster, but the reality is there is a foreign power here trying to push an agenda,” said Jamie Fly, a former adviser to Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) who helped create the Hamilton 68 project, which tracks the influence of Russian-backed propaganda online.

Researchers say the fake accounts sometimes disseminate content from well-known Russian-backed sources, including Sputnik and RT. The content is then picked up by U.S. conservatives. Or the fake accounts might amplify content created by far-right media outlets known for misinformation, including Gateway Pundit and Infowars.

Fly said Trump’s liberal use of Twitter has only increased the return on investment for a foreign power such as Russia seeking to sow division within the U.S. political system. Accounts can use Trump’s low bar for retweets to their advantage by creating large volumes of content in the hope that he might be drawn to some of it.

Putin hit the jackpot!

Monday, August 7, 2017

My Kitty is Destroying the Planet

At least helping. I was interested to see this story. My kitty is 15 and a half. He's winding down. Actually I thought I'd be putting him to sleep in January, but he keeps on ticking. I've recently thought that I won't replace him and this article is one of the reasons I'd come to that conclusion. I maintain a mostly vegan diet, but that isn't possible with cats.

America’s 180 million or so Rovers and Fluffies gulp down about 25 percent of all the animal-derived calories consumed in the United States each year, according to Okin’s calculations. If these pets established a sovereign nation, it would rank fifth in global meat consumption.

Needless to say, producing that meat  — which requires more land, water and energy and pollutes more than plant-based food  — creates a lot of greenhouse gases: as many as 64 million tons annually, or about the equivalent of driving more than 12 million cars around for a year. That doesn’t mean pet-keeping must be eschewed for the sake of the planet, but “neither is it an unalloyed good,” Okin wrote in a study published this week in PLOS One.

Oh Look, The Pope is a Lib

Thanks Charles Pierce:

American Catholicism, he argued, echoing the article's thesis, "has become different than mainstream European Catholicism and mainstream Latin American Catholicism," and has fallen "into the hands of the religious right." The authors of the article argue that American evangelical and ultraconservative Catholics risk corrupting the Roman Catholic faith with an ideology intended to inject "religious influence in the political sphere." They suggest that so-called values voters are using the banners of religious liberty and opposition to abortion to try to supplant secularism with a "theocratic type of state."

And this too, which I alluded to in my letter to the reverend.

But his conversion doesn't erase his past. After all, Gingrich has a history of marital infidelity. He cheated on his first wife, and his relationship with Callista, his third wife, began six years before the end of his second marriage. She was a staffer 23 years his junior; he was a Republican congressman who had yet to become speaker of the House. "Without a doubt," says Rozell, "many people will find it rather strange, ironic, whatever, that his religious journey that led him to convert to Catholicism began with an affair he had with a young woman while he was still married to his second wife."

A Question of Belonging

That's the subject line I used when I sent the letter. Works good as a post title, too. I may have to add a label "Fights With People on Facebook" or some such.

Dear Reverend Mudge:
     By way of introduction, I’m Kevin Robbins and I attend Hudson Falls UMC. I have liberal political views and this has never been a problem in the church I attend. I occasionally have letters published in the Glens Falls Post Star. There are some fellow parishioners who see them and comment. Some agree with me on some letters. One lady told me, “I don’t agree with your letters, but they’re well-written. And I used to be an English teacher.” Hey, I’ll take that! I try to be polite in the letters. They’re mostly about gun control or healthcare or similar issues. I don’t discuss the current president because whose mind am I going to change? Beyond a cursory acknowledgement of the letters, I don’t bring my politics into church. In my church no one has made me feel unwelcome because of my views.
     I’m going to include a link to a Facebook post made by someone who was on my friendlist. This is someone I went to school with and who attends the South Glens Falls Methodist Church. The conversation I had, or tried to have, in the comments bothers me quite a bit. I’ll admit to maybe borderline trolling at some points, but I wasn’t getting much response. The fact that the reverend of that church and his wife both approved of the post possibly offends me more. Even allowing they maybe weren’t aware of the comments, they still lent their imprimatur to the strawman nonsense that is the subject of the post.
     Liberals are tolerant of Marxists? How many Marxists are there still around? Vlad Putin and his gang have taken up kleptocracy. I don’t know what Nicolas Maduro of Venezuela is, but if it helps I’ll denounce him here and now. Transexuals? Last week President Trump tried a bigly bit of discrimination against those in the military. He was slapped down by the military brass and even some Congressional Republicans. No liberals are tolerant of ISIS or al-Qaeda. I believe that’s safe to say. I’d hope most are supportive of Muslims being free to practice their religion without their mosques being fire-bombed like the one recently in Minnesota. This is one of many that have been attacked. I will plead guilty to being intolerant of Conservatives and Christians who are bigots.
     I used to go to the suppers at the SGF church. I’ve kept a mostly vegan diet for the last year or so. It would be a moot point now, though. I certainly want nothing to do with them and I have to question whether I want to continue in the Methodist Church at all. It’s nice to see the ability to be so selective about who’s admitted anyway.

The post:

“The paradox of liberal tolerance is that it extends to Marxists, transexuals and Islamic radicals – but not to conservatives or Christians.” Dinesh D’Souza.

They are not tolerant, they ‘a’ crazy.

Comment thread:

Kevin Robbins - How does that shake out when it comes to Christian liberals?
KC - The two can't go together.
KR - That sounds pretty intolerant to me.
        KC - Sorry but bible following Christians are not liberals. The bible is very clear about right and wrong, but I can have my beliefs and still be tolerant, I just won't bend my standards for myself.
        KC - The majority of my family are liberals - I still love them.
        KR - First, no the Bible is not that clear on "right and wrong." Secondly, if it is you do know that D'Souza is a convicted felon? I'm sure that's all good because he's Conservative and Christian.
        KR -  And you don't consider your family capable of being Christian without adopting whatever Conservative beliefs you have?
MV -  but she is right according to God;s word and you can't argue with that the two can't mix.
       KR -  And thus spake Michael Vaughn without basing your comment on anything. According to what   part of God's word does someone have to hold Conservative political views to be a Christian.

I'd consider Pope Francis to be liberal. Are you going to say he isn't liberal? Or isn't Christian?
KR - Yeah, Jesus was always going on about cutting taxes on the Romans.
KR - The people at Fox News I'm assuming are Conservative and Christian. Are Trump, Guiliani and Gingrich all on their third wives after cheating on the first two good Conservative Christians? https://www.yahoo.com/.../as-new-allegations-emerge%2C.html
KR - Because I am open-minded, I'll entertain the possibility that you're right, Kathi. Rather than take you and Michael's word for it I think I'll contact Rev. Mudge and ask his opinion. If he tells me that what you say is true then I'll leave the Methodist Church. Since, as a liberal, I'm not wanted. I'll certainly go out of way to make it known to anyone else who doesn't hold strict Conservative views that they're not wanted there. Fair enough?
MV - all i said is she is right, the two don't mix don't know what your on about??
        KR - You have every right to believe what you want. I hope you'll respect my being a little offended at being told I can't be a Christian because my political beliefs fail the litmus test.
KC - Fair enough. I stated how I feel and live MY life. After you live my life you then can tell me I'm wrong. No hard feelings.
KC -  Let me know what Bill says

KR -  I will let you know. I'd really like to get an answer myself.

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Tracking Elise

Not in a stalking way. Turns out she has a Trump score of 92.5%. Tea Party, Freedom Caucus wingnut Mark Sanford only clocked in a 85%. Congrats congresswoman!

Sweet Jesus, I Hate Jill Stein

Not really, but she's seriously annoying.

Both war profiteer parties are screaming that supporting diplomacy is treason. It was the same during the run-up to attacking Iraq & Libya.

How many ways is that bullshit? I don't like the GOP, but I don't go around saying stuff that mind-numbingly stupid about them. 

Paul Ryan Got a Pony

And he wants us to get a useless border wall. I'd rather have a pony. Lyin' Ryan wants it so much he put on shades and made an ad in favor of it. No mention of Mexico paying for it. What's that? We're paying for it? Bullshit!

Monday, July 31, 2017

Go To Infowipes.com

Islamophobia Fake News

Just want to mention this nasty bit that was on my Facebook page. I suppose I could unfriend or whatever the person that put it up. That seems counterproductive, tho. I'd prefer to try to educate people in how they should check things like this out. And I try to lose as few friends as necessary.

Laura Hayes is not the person on my friend-list. Her, I would trash faster than the Mooch did to Priebus. She's got a pile of nasty anti-Muslim trash on her page. I did report her to FB and sent a message to her pointing out that what she put up was bullshit. How much good that does, I have no idea. Here's the Snopes version.

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Must See TV

Latest letter to the Post Star in response to Elise's mouthpiece. 

I want to join Tom Flanagin in urging people to watch the Plattsburgh town hall with Rep. Stefanik at Mountain Lake PBS' website. It’s a good opportunity to see her between now and next year's campaign ads. Debates, who knows? There are two additional reasons, though.

The first is it disproves the notion that her constituents are going to go on a rampage if she holds one. I was a lucky attendee and can attest that there may have been a few groans but definitely no pitchforks. Understandably, health care is an emotional issue. So watch for the audio/visual evidence disproving that old saw.

The second reason is to see the gentleman questioning her at a little over an hour and eight minutes in. He points out that she had seven opportunities to sign onto a bill forcing President Trump to release his taxes. She responds she's "called on the president to release his taxes" and other obfuscations. The questioner persists by asking whether she'd vote for tax cuts without knowing how it would affect Trump. She stuck to the "calls for the president to release his taxes." I don't think that's going to work. No matter how many times she asks. Or, for that matter, how many times she's asked why she wouldn't vote to force the release of them. Are checks and balances about giving aid and comfort to the White House? I don't think she'll answer that either.

Monday, July 24, 2017

A Couple of Stein Stories

I love this one. I love it like the Mooch loves Trump. God, I hope there's something to it.

Third party candidate Jill Stein was a surprising addition this week to investigators casting an increasingly wide net in the congressional probe into Russian interference in the presidential campaign.

Stein’s name was included in a Senate Judiciary Committee letter requesting all communication between President Trump’s son Donald Trump Jr. and a number of others, including Russian officials and other members of Trump’s presidential campaign.

Yeah, it's a smear and McCarthyism and blargh! Hope not.

I'd be more than willing to give her a pass on this if it wasn't for Matt Funiciello. That and the general holier than thouness of the Green Party. 

She has made purity a central pillar of her presidential candidacy, and she has held that the Green Party reigns above all others with respect to moral and ethical supremacy. In an interview with CNN last April, she said, “I have long since thrown in the towel on the Democratic and Republican parties because they are really a front group for the 1 percent, for predatory banks, fossil-fuel giants, and war profiteers.”

Yes, that's what I'm talking about. She's invested in mutual funds that invest in companies that include predatory banks, fossil-fuel giants and war profiteers. Not directly invested. But you know what, she doesn't deserve a break for it anyway. 

Stein has invested $995,011 to $2.2 million in funds such as the Vanguard 500 fund that maintain significant stakes in Exxon and other energy companies like Chevron, Duke Energy, Conoco Phillips, and Toho Gas, a Japanese company that engages in the sale of natural gas, tar, and coke, a fuel made from coal.

Stein has invested roughly $1.2 to $2.65 million in funds like the TIAA-CREF Equity Index that have big stakes in the financial-services industry. Holdings in these funds include big banks like JP Morgan Chase, Citigroup, and Deutsche Bank as major parts of their investment portfolios. Five of the funds that Stein invests in maintain large positions in Wells Fargo, which has come under fire recently amid charges that its employees were pressured to open up fraudulent new accounts for clients.

One of the funds Stein has invested in maintains a significant position in Goldman Sachs bonds. Stein once referred to Goldman Sachs as Hillary Clinton’s best friend.

In one of the handful of direct stock investments Stein holds, she listed between $50,001 and $100,000 in the pharmaceutical giant Merck, which paid a record fine for overbilling Medicaid. She has also invested $1,130,010 to $2,400,000 in funds that maintain significant stakes in Pfizer, Novartis, Johnson & Johnson, and Allergan.

Stein has between $500,004 to $1,100,000 invested in funds that maintain significant stakes in Phillip Morris International, the tobacco giant that manufactures Marlboro cigarettes and 17 other tobacco brands.

(S)he has between $50,001-$100,000 invested in a fund that has Raytheon Corp. as its fourth largest holding, a $38 million investment. Raytheon, which is the fourth largest defense contractor in the world and derives 90 percent of its revenue from military contracts, manufactures drone systems, which Stein has committed to ending, and significant missile systems.

And for the height of dis-ingenuousness. 

Stein said that she has “explored” more socially responsible funds but “found their investments in fracking and large-scale biofuels not much better than the non-green funds. I have not yet found the mutual funds that represent my goals of advancing the cause of people, planet, and peace.”

It took me less than 30 seconds with a web search to find funds that don't invest in fracking. 

Many critics say clean-energy and socially responsible investment funds offer a poor rate of return and should generally be avoided… Which likely explains why Stein chose to invest her wealth in funds that have often offered double-digit returns.

Yes, maybe that's it. And what does Matthew Pureheart have to do with it? 

(I)t was his wife's money and it was made by investing in some pretty damaging and unconscious companies (Monsanto, McDonald's, tobacco and oil companies and several hedge funds to name but a few.)

That was about Aaron Woolf, his Democratic opponent in 2014. I suspect he's referring to Woolf's wife owning mutual funds that invested in those companies and industries and that she's not directly invested in them. I can hardly wait to be in a comment thread involving or including MF and linking to this Stein story. C'mon 2018. 

Friday, July 14, 2017

Quick Link to Michael Gerson

On the latest sins of Trump:

Republicans have sometimes employed the excuse that members of the Trump team are new to politics — babes in the woods — who don’t yet understand all the ins and outs. Their innocence, the argument goes, is proved by their guilt. This might apply to minor infractions of campaign finance law. It does not cover egregious acts of wrongdoing. Putting a future president in the debt of a foreign power — and subject, presumably, to blackmail by that power — is the height of sleazy stupidity. It is not a mistake born of greenness; it is evidence of a vacant conscience.

Next Challenger For Congress

Emily Martz, who I believe is number four.

Professionally, since her graduation from Mount Holyoke College in Massachusetts with a bachelor’s degree in history and a minor in political science, her journey has spanned each coast and several elements of the evolving modern economy.

She worked in financial services and economic development in the Pacific Northwest as well as the Northeast, for companies such as Prudential Insurance, Putnam Investments and The Hartford. She pursued graduate studies in history, with a focus on the mutual fund industry, at the University of Delaware while also instructing business, economics and history courses at Paul Smith’s College. And she helped to lead the Adirondack North Country Association’s job-creation and sustainable development efforts before she recently resigned, on amicable terms, from her posts as ANCA’s deputy director and director of operations and finance to run as a candidate full-time. She also resigned as a volunteer on the Saranac Lake Downtown Advisory Board to run for Congress.

She sounds great as do all of them really. Patrick Nelson has been out campaigning forever it seems. Looking forward to the primary. 

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Eat Your Nuts and Chocolate

Your telomeres will thank you.

Diet appears to play a role in free-radical damage (which alters cell functioning), inflammation, and gut bacteria. It also affects the length of telomeres­­—protective caps at the end of chromosomes. These factors can have an impact on conditions like heart disease, type 2 diabetes, stroke, hypertension, respiratory disorders, cognitive decline, and infection.

And don't forget the beans. You already knew they were good for your heart, though.

A Few More About the Brilliant Donald Jr

Hey, everyone else is calling the Trumps brilliant. I gotta say that I don't think it means what they think it means. First up, fake news CNN.

So, even if he didn't know the exact name or identity of the Russian lawyer he was to meet with, he knew -- if he read his email -- that whatever he was told in the meeting was part of a foreign government's efforts to help choose its preferred candidate in the 2016 election.

Sit with that for a minute: The eldest son of the de facto Republican presidential nominee reportedly met with someone he knew was peddling information as part of a Russian government effort to elect his dad.

Sounds real to me. It's sounds like it's getting realer all the time. And Randall Eliason on how conspiracy cases are made, brick by brick like a wall. Only this wall is getting made.

Conspiracies, by their nature, take place in secret. To break through that secrecy, prosecutors often rely on circumstantial evidence. The classic trial lawyer’s metaphor is that each such piece of evidence is a brick. No single event standing alone may prove the case. But when assembled together, those individual bricks may build a wall — a big, beautiful wall — that excludes any reasonable doubt about what happened.

That’s why this latest news is a big deal. The meeting helps establish a few critical facts. The first is simply that contacts between Russians and campaign officials did take place. If you are seeking to prove a criminal partnership, evidence that the alleged partners had private meetings establishes the opportunity to reach an agreement.

Of course, there already was evidence of other meetings between Russian officials and members of the Trump campaign. The crucial new detail about this meeting is that campaign members now admit it took place after they were told that Veselnitskaya was offering compromising information about Clinton.

This fact is significant regardless of what happened at the meeting. Proving a defendant’s state of mind is key in any criminal case. This meeting provides critical evidence about the state of mind of Trump representatives: They were willing to hear what a Russian individual had to offer about their opponent.

Wonder how well the Trumps are sleeping these days.

Monday, July 10, 2017

We Need All Our Legs

Paul Krugman pointing out why Republicans are having such a hard time repealing and replacing destroying healthcare in this country.

To understand what’s happened with the A.C.A. so far, you need to realize that as written (and interpreted by the Supreme Court), the law’s functioning depends a lot on cooperation from state governments. And where states have in fact cooperated, expanding Medicaid, operating their own insurance exchanges, and promoting both enrollment and competition among insurers, it has worked pretty darn well.

Compare, for example, the experience of Kentucky and its neighbor Tennessee. In 2013, before full implementation of the A.C.A., Tennessee had slightly fewer uninsured, 13 percent versus 14 percent. But by 2015Kentucky, which implemented the law in full, had cut its uninsured rate to just 6 percent, while Tennessee was at 11.

Or consider the problem of counties with only one (or no) insurer, meaning no competition. As one recent study points out, this is almost entirely a red-state problem. In states with G.O.P. governors, 21 percent of the population lives in such counties; in Democratic-governor states, less than 2 percent.

So Obamacare is, though nobody will believe it, a well-thought-out law that works where states want it to work. It could and should be made to work better, but Republicans show no interest in making that happen. Instead, all their ideas involve sawing off one or more legs of that three-legged stool.

I may not have said it for a day or two so, thank God I live in NY!

Lies and the Lying Liars That Tweet Them

I know I'm probably going to be commenting somewhere and this bit of stupidity is going to come up. I've pretty much declared a moratorium on responding to the Hillary selling uranium to the Russians thing.

There were a total of seven memos prepared by Comey after his nine conversations with Trump. Four of those memos are marked as classified at the “secret” or “confidential” level, officials told the Hill.

It’s true that “the former FBI director’s personal memos detailing private conversations with President Trump contained … secret information,” as the Fox report summarizes, though not, apparently, top secret material. (The levels of classifications go “confidential,” “secret” and then “top secret.”) But the wording on that Fox report is misleading. The memos contained classified information is true when considering the memos as a group. It is not true, though, that eachmemo contained classified information — or, at least, it’s not true that each memo was marked as being classified.

This issue came up during Comey’s June testimony, at which point Comey made clear that the memo he gave to his friend to leak, documenting a meeting on Feb. 14 of this year, was not one that included classified material.

I'd like to think I can get to the point of anticipating the wingnuttia.  

Weaving a Tangled Web

Trump Jr. shot holes all through a lot of denials of Russian contacts during the campaign. And I thought all he shot were innocent animals. Nice going Trumpito.

On “Fox News Sunday” on Jan. 15, when Pence passed along Michael Flynn's faulty information about his contact with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak after the campaign, Pence also denied any contact between the campaign and the Kremlin or Russian meddlers.

Poor Mike Pence. They don't tell him anything. Plausible deniability or they just don't like him?

DICKERSON: Just to button up one question, did any adviser or anybody in the Trump campaign have any contact with the Russians who were trying to meddle in the election?

MIKE PENCE: Of course not. And I think to suggest that is to give credence to some of these bizarre rumors that have swirled around the candidacy.

So, The Donald Jr, Manafort and Kushner took a meeting with someone whom they had no idea the identity of.

The question of what Trump Jr. really knew about her is “an investigable issue,” Bauer, who was also White House counsel under Barack Obama, told me. “It’s very difficult to believe that the son of a presidential candidate and the senior members of his campaign would go into a meeting with someone whose identity is unknown to them. Investigators will certainly not take that at face value.”

Rep. Adam Schiff (Calif.), the ranking Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee, has already said the committee’s probe will seek to interview all attendees at the meeting, presumably in part to establish what was known about Veselnitskaya before Trump Jr. and the others met with her. Bauer told me that special counsel Robert S. Mueller III’s investigation will likely try to establish the same. “It’s going to be an uphill battle for them to say they routinely took meetings with people who suggested they had useful information without checking their identities,” Bauer said.

I've been seeing this notion put out by the WH lately that even if they did collude with the Russians it's not illegal. Yes, it's gone from no collusion to what's the big deal. Anyway, happy to see this. 

“It does not help their case that you have a very specific operational instance where the campaign decided it was prepared to welcome assistance from a Russian source,” said Bauer, who has previously argued in a series of posts that the law prohibits cooperation with foreign nationals to influence a U.S. election. “You are not permitted to solicit or accept anything of value from a foreign national to influence an election. You cannot enter into a conspiracy with a foreign national to influence an election.”

“What was precisely her connection to the Russian government?” Bauer said. “Investigators are going to try to dig as deeply as possible here.” But Bauer added that it might not even have to be established that she did “report back to Moscow” for this to rise to the level of accepting help from a foreign national in influencing an election. Bauer concluded: “This should draw an awful lot of investigative energy.”

Update: Bauer has just posted his own piece on the significance of these events right here.

It is, it is illegal.

Friday, July 7, 2017

Witch Hunt?


So, the White House is spreading lies about the "failure" of ACA. Fact checks.

Another WaPo article on the damage GOPCare is bound to do to rural areas which is what most of my district is. That's why it's huge. You can't even see Russia from one end to the other. You will be able to after Trump signs over Fort Drum to Putin, though.

Monday, June 26, 2017

A New Here's to the State of Donald Trump

Just Some Links

This is a sad article from Ted Gup with a lot of sad numbers.

We know numbers can be numbing. Take the number 4,000. That is roughly how many are estimated to have died last year from drug overdoses in my home state of Ohio. That’s 60 percent of American deaths in all the years of war in Afghanistan and Iraq. Or half a million, the tally of overdoses nationwide from opioids and other drugs since 2000 — more than the number of Americans killed in World War II. As the totals grow, so does the numbness.

Must be numbers day. This is E. J. Dionne with 3 (potentially 4) big lies from the Senate on healthcare. 

Lie One: Democrats and progressives are unwilling to work with Republicans and conservatives on this issue.

Lie Two: This bill is primarily about improving health care for American families.

Lie Three: The Senate bill is a “compromise.

It'd be laughable if it wasn't so serious. 

A list of things that aren't normal from Amy Siskind. There are too  many to single out just a few.

And of course, Trump lies.

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Changing Minds and Hearts

Yeah, probably not. PS LTTE:

     Hopefully enough time has passed so we can mention the shooting that wounded Rep. Scalise. As I write this, he is still hospitalized. We all wish him a speedy and full recovery. I also wish him and our representative a speedy change of heart.
     Mr. Scalise has received $18,900 from the NRA and Ms. Stefanik, $4000. Much has been said, in the wake of the shooting, about the lack of civility in our discourse. The NRA sells a T-shirt with an eagle clutching a rifle. The slogan is, "Because you can't fist fight tyranny." Classy. We have a healthy enough system of government and a free press to prevent tyrants from taking root. It's worked well so far and seems to still be.
     Maybe it's time for Congress to make gun policy without the aid of these lobbyists for the gun industry. Would merchants of death have been uncivil? It's past time to get rid of the Dickey Amendment prohibiting funding of the CDC to reduce gun deaths. Jay Dickey himself, before he passed, called for its repeal. How about our reps doing the very least they can to address the problem? They can do it while they wait for the white puffs of smoke from the Senate chimney portending the "new and improved" AHCA.

pro-gun t-shirts

Fuck the Green Party

John Cole went with fuck Jill Stein. He probably doesn't have a perennial GP candidate running for Congress in his district. A year from now I'll be listening to Matt Funiciello inform me, condescendingly, how there's no difference between Democrats and Republicans. Fuck the whole party.

Stein didn’t just attend the gala—dressed in a shimmering silver shawl, she sat at the same table as Russian President Vladimir Putin, who has barely disguised his glee at the political chaos that what he calls “patriotic” Russian hackers have unleashed in the United States. And she recorded a video from Moscow’s famous Red Square, in which she talked about “the need to rein in American exceptionalism” and replace “a U.S. policy based on domination”—words that sounded like they were ripped from Putin’s talking points.

At the risk of sounding like a conspiracy nut myself, who knows what the Russians are capable of? Yes, I'm aware it sounds crazy. We'll see, though. 

Thursday, June 15, 2017

PS Concern Trolling

The Post Star is concerned about the coarseness of our discourse after the shooting yesterday. The one where congressmen got shot not the one in San Francisco where 4 people died. I'll just recycle my comment from there. I'm Green like that and why mess with perfection.

Let’s end the jokes and the meanness and call out those who continue it.

Stop watching the cable news shows that have become a partisan divide and really try to understand an issue with some in-depth reading.

Turn off the late-night comics.

I suppose all of what you say is a nice thought. The comments preceding me shows that it's not going to happen. Personally, I don't watch TV and get my news from the WashPo and Guardian. Don't know how that places me as a partisan dweller with the editorial board of the PS. I know that my fellow commenters would say that that's "liberal media." Or worse. Not sure I even want to know what their news sources are. I have listened to right wing radio a bit. Don't ask me to give Breitbart or Drudge or Alex Jones a fair chance.

This latest gun tragedy, no not the one in SF where 4 people died, will do nothing to change our insane lack of gun laws and lack of concern about looking at ways to fix the problem. Repeal the Dickey Amendment! Many legislators' livelihoods depend on not doing anything about it.

I see that many on the right are pointing out that the shooter was a Sanders supporter (definitely not a HRC fan, FWIW). We can't allow his behavior to be generalized to all of us on the left. They cannot be allowed to use this to quash dissent toward the president's policies. I'm a little concerned that this editorial is leaning in that direction.

As far as "end the jokes" and "turn off the late night comics." Absolutely not! Satire is more essential than ever now. Sometimes comics go too far. Sometimes commenters go too far. That doesn't mean we should stop. Maybe an apology is in order occasionally. So be it. This is a president who has been married 3 times and cheated on, presumably (but certainly the first 2), all three wives. Then, he has the audacity (of chutzpah, not hope) to go in front of a group of evangelicals and say "we're under siege." Apparently Topo Gigio was in his pocket.  What? We're not supposed to joke about this guy? Do you take him seriously?

Don's and Ed's little friend. 

Monday, June 12, 2017

Who Would Work for Deadbeat Donald?

Why would these law firms have represented him against people he hadn't paid? Why would they they think he was going to pay them?

And John Oliver on the Comey testimony

Someone's Got Muellergrets (or What Would J Edgar Do?)

Actually it seems like a few wingnuts do.

Popular conservative commentators like firebrand author Ann Coulter, pro-Trump radio host Bill Mitchell, Town Hall columnist Kurt Schlichter, and longtime Trump political adviser Roger Stone echoed Gingrich.

So, like Newt Gingrich, these people were for Robert Mueller before they were against him. I suppose Coulter is out trying to pump up her flagging book sales. Mitchell I've never heard of and likely few other people have either. Schlichter, I thought was the former quarterback with the gambling problem. I'm a little disappointed it wasn't. The only things said about Stone should be at his upcoming trial. 

So, they're all calling for Mueller to step down or be fired because James Comey talked to him about the testimony to make certain he wasn't saying anything he shouldn't. I'm sure he'll pack his bags and go home to satisfy this group of nobodies. 

Another Dissenting Voice on AHCA

The Albany Times Union finds much to dislike in Paul Ryan's monster.

The proposed federal legislation, currently under consideration in the U.S. Senate, would destabilize the individual health insurance market and increase premiums and out-of-pocket costs for lower-income New Yorkers who buy policies through NY State of Health, the state’s online exchange established under Obamacare.

Of particular concern for New York, the report said, are tax credits in the Republican proposal that are based on age rather than income or the cost of coverage, as under the current system.


Funding for about 25 percent of New York’s Essential Plan would also be cut under the Republican proposal, the UHF report said. The Essential Plan offers health coverage with premiums of $20 a month or less to about 650,000 New Yorkers above the income eligibility level for Medicaid.

Thank you, Governor Cuomo.

Earlier this week, Gov. Andrew Cuomo signaled his intent to maintain Obamacare in New York, with the announcement of emergency regulations that would keep the federal law’s provisions intact and penalize health insurers if they withdraw from NY State of Health.

Of course, that was gentle compared to the Washington Post.

Key Republicans understand the damage they are doing. “Insurers have made clear the lack of certainty is causing 2018 proposed premiums to rise significantly,” House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Kevin Brady (R-Tex.) said Thursday, arguing that Congress should step in. As the administration still appears determined to stoke uncertainty, lawmakers would have to move quickly to prevent more damage.

The question of cost-sharing reductions is only the biggest of many fears the Trump administration is inspiring. The president’s maladministration could include lax enforcement of the individual mandate to purchase health insurance, inadequate efforts to enroll more people in coverage and other gratuitous subversions of the finely tuned system Obamacare sought to create.

Friday, June 9, 2017

Russian Collusion is Fun

But, let's get to the meat. And I say that as a (mostly) vegan.

We were reminded Tuesday afternoon just how vast Trump’s potential problems are when Forbes’ Dan Alexander broke the news that Eric Trump’s charitable foundation has been lying to its donors and funneling significant sums of money right into his father’s pockets.

Ripping off kids with cancer. Yes, that's certainly a start. I'm really holding out for the money laundering. Hey, the more charges the better, though. 

“Even if the Eric Trump Foundation had to pay the full rate for literally everything,” Alexander writes, “Forbes couldn't come up with a plausible path to $322,000 given the parameters of the annual event (a golf outing for about 200 and dinner for perhaps 400 more).”

Put the whole criminal family behind bars. 

Looking back over the course of Trump’s business career, it’s striking how frequently he’s been caught breaking the law.

Very early on in his casino career he avoided bankruptcy only with the help of an illegal loan from his father. And from his empty-box tax scam to money laundering at his casinos to racial discrimination in his apartments to Federal Trade Commission violations for his stock purchases to Securities and Exchange Commission violations for his financial reporting, Trump has spent his entire career breaking various laws, getting caught, and then essentially plowing ahead unharmed. When he was caught engaging in illegal racial discrimination to please a mob boss, he paid a fine. There was no sense that this was a repeated pattern of violating racial discrimination law, and certainly no desire to take a closer look at his various personal and professional connections to the mafia.

Trump even paid out a $25 million civil settlement to make fraud claims against his fake university go away. And, remarkably, the fact that his university was fake wasn’t even the fraudulent part.

Yes, lock up Barron, too. He comes from bad stock.

I know Trump said he was vindicated by Comey's testimony. I don't think he can take much more vindication like that. 

Religion is the Last Refuge of a Scoundrel

And here I'd thought it was patriotism.

President Trump sought comfort in the figurative embrace of his evangelical supporters Thursday as the FBI director he recently fired told Congress about their conversations. The president told a religious gathering that “we’re under siege” but will emerge “bigger and better and stronger than ever.”

Could that be any funnier? Bible dudes, he's not one of you. He's one of those false prophets Jesus talked about. 

Courtesy of Elise's FB Page

Can't believe how much great stuff is shared on my wingnut rep's FB page. Apparently someone went all Secret Agent Man Devin Nunes at a meeting Rep. Sally from Arizona had with some bankers.

McSally complained that President Donald Trump and his tweets were creating troubling "distractions" and "it's basically being taken out on me. Any Republican member of Congress, you are going down with the ship. And we're going to hand the gavel to Pelosi in 2018, they only need 28 seats and the path to that gavel being handed over is through my seat. And right now, it doesn't matter that it's me, it doesn't matter what I've done. I have an 'R' next to my name and right now, this environment would have me not prevail."

Admittedly, McSally was making these comments as she was asking the bankers to open their checkbooks for her reelection campaign, so it could well be that she was just doing the ol' fear-mongering-for-dollars act. 

Wonder if Elise is running around with the same spiel. I loved that 5 members of the Indivisible group got tickets to the talk, but then 4 were revoked. Oops, they missed one.

But the fifth member (whose identity The Skinny is not privy to) did manage to appear bankerly enough to crash the party—and the spy recorded McSally's entire speech for the Randall's group, and from there, it fell into our hands.

Yes, I believe she has a lot of Stefanik in her.

Randall says she's still hoping McSally will do some open town halls in Tucson so her group won't have to resort to subterfuge to try to find out her positions.

"I'm pretty angry that she was willing to talk to out-of-district bankers but she's not willing to talk to us," Randall said.

All we are saying is give town halls a chance.

Thursday, June 8, 2017

Senator King Questions Mealy Mouthed Motherfuckers

And does anyone know how to pronounce herculean

Dan Coats is taking the “intelligence” out of “national intelligence director.”

Testifying with Trump administration colleagues Wednesday to the Senate Intelligence Committee, 

Coats read aloud from his written testimony about “herculean” efforts made by the National Security Agency.

“The NSA has made her-cyur-ROO-lian — this is hard for me to say,” said President Trump’s national intelligence director, a former Republican senator from Indiana. “They have made extensive efforts. Her-CYOO-lian, I think, is the, uh –”

Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, a fellow witness, intervened. “Her-cyoo-LEE-an,” he coached.

“Say that again?” Coats requested.

Bonus Angus.

The Price of Fake News

What Alex Jones and his ilk have wrought.

A Florida woman who sent death threats to the father of a boy who was killed in the 2012 shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School has been sentenced to five months in federal prison.

Lucy Richards, 57, who believes the shooting that killed 20 children in Newtown, Connecticut, was all a hoax, was sentenced on Wednesday in Fort Lauderdale after pleading guilty to transmitting threats in interstate commerce.

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

No Sword Dance For You

Mayor Khan of London is keeping the red carpet rolled up for Trump's visit in the fall.

“I think one of the things, when you have a special relationship, is no different to when you’ve got a close mate,” he continued. “You stand with them in times of adversity, but you call them out when they’re wrong. And there are many things about which Donald Trump is wrong.”

Sunday, June 4, 2017

Mr. Chivalry

Nice Company You're Keeping, Elise

What the hell, though. This woman (and Elise) represent the crazy that makes up the Republican base.

NCPR was able to confirm that as early as 2011, Ashendorff was claiming inaccurately that Barack Obama is a Muslim who in Ashendorff’s words “hates Jews.”

In 2015, Ashendorff posted another inaccurate claim that then-CIA director John Brennan converted to Islam secretly while stationed in Saudi Arabia, a conspiracy theory distributed widely in far-right circles. 

Oh yes, she's a Seth Rich Truther, too. Done in by serial killer, Hillary Clinton, I believe. 

Blind Eye to Some Terror

Philip Bump on the difference in Trump response times to various acts of terror.

Critics of the president were quick to note how long it took Trump to get around to any mention of the Portland attacks, and from his secondary Twitter account. Compared with violent incidents that were a function of Islamic terrorism, the demure @POTUS tweet was remarkably late.

And Jen Rubin, bless her heart:

Meanwhile — and it pains me to write this — our president acted like a clod, a heartless and dull-witted thug in sending out a series of tweets. He — commander in chief and leader of the Free World — first retweeted an unverified, unofficial Drudge headline about the unfolding terrorist attack. Then he aimed to bolster his Muslim travel ban (which is not supposed to be a Muslim travel ban). “We need to be smart, vigilant and tough,” he tweeted. “We need the courts to give us back our rights. We need the Travel Ban as an extra level of safety!” (Aside from the inappropriateness of President Trump’s tweet, he fails to grasp that the courts in these cases are reaffirming our rights against an overreaching, discriminatory edict.)

I have no doubt that it does cause her pain to write it. To experience her agony in full, go read the whole column.

Friday, June 2, 2017


I hope not.

Twelve years later, as Democrats swept back into the majority, their victories included the defeat of a 30-year incumbent from Iowa, Republican Jim Leach, and a 26-year veteran from South Florida, E. Clay Shaw Jr., who two years earlier had won with 63 percent of the vote.

That's funny. Elise got 63% in November. 

David Bromberg

I dropped a link at Infidels'. Why not end the week with a full concert.

And I have it on good authority that he is not a Randian. Around 43:15 is Danger Man. Think of Jared Kushner while listening to it. It's just eerily prophetic. 

Thursday, June 1, 2017

Charles Pierce on the Greatest Story Ever Yet To Be Told

Waiting, just waiting.

Weissmann is a wartime consigliere about this stuff. He has worked as both a prosecutor and a defense lawyer in the area of white-collar crime. His specialty is international financial fraud, and unwinding its complexities in such a way that the rest of us schmoes can understand. And we, the schmoes of the world, make up jury pools. Robert Mueller is not fooling around and, for all the bizarre behavior concerning secure comms and Russian ambassadors, he seems to have homed in already on the key to the whole sorry mess. Somewhere, at the heart of it, there's nothing more or less banal than the classic American hunger for a quick and easy buck. That's where this whole thing is headed.

Prudes in Hometown

I suppose I should show the cartoon first. Leave now if you're easily shocked. Don't say I didn't warn you.

On to the upstate NY blue noses. First up, Dean Pickett

The illustration in Saturday, May 20 Viewpoints was not fit for publication in any local paper that minors read. It is disgusting pornography designed to denigrate our president and in turn every citizen in this country. It is beneath the moral integrity of your publication and most of your subscribers.  

Second is an old favorite in Hometown, John Siebrecht. Such a favorite that his last name didn't even upset the spell check. Kudos John. 

Boo to The Post-Star for the outrageous "cartoon" of our president wearing only a leaf and depicted as a lazy pervert touching hands with the just recently departed Roger Ailes. Roger Ailes, a colleague of yours, is also naked with frightened children scattered about. One such child is down around Mr. Ailes’ waist, with only the back of his head visible.

I've been trying with some success to limit my LTTEs. There is only so much stupidity I can stand, though. 

       I'm writing in response to the two letters about the editorial cartoon, "The Creation ..." Dean Pickett says, "It is disgusting pornography designed to denigrate our president and in turn every citizen in the country." The cartoon was obviously inspired by "The Creation of Adam" which graces the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel. Maybe it has been described as "disgusting pornography," but probably not often. Personally, I didn't feel denigrated. But then, I've been called a nihilist. 
     John Siebrecht writes, "our president wearing only a leaf and depicted as a lazy pervert touching hands with ... Roger Ailes." It's hard to believe anyone ever looked at the original and opined that Adam was being portrayed as a "lazy pervert." Michelangelo didn't even cover him with a fig leaf. Creation, then Tree of Knowledge, then fig leaf; the rest is history. Ailes as God is the truly disturbing part. Mr. Siebrecht is also upset about the position of one "child" (the age is nebulous). I'll recommend an article, "6More Women Allege That Roger Ailes Sexually Harassed Them." It's online in New York Magazine. One of them was 16 at the time. At least he didn't draw smutty cartoons for the Post Star.
     The point of the editorializing was that Ailes is responsible for the Trump presidency. He was a right wing propagandist with no regard for journalism. I doubt any folks at the Post Star would claim him as a colleague, as Siebrecht suggests. Anyone upset by this drawing should probably leave the kids home if they visit the Vatican. The art it's based on is more explicit and much more realistic. 

Yes, you dear online reader get a link. If the cartoon shocked you, Ailes' behavior will be way beyond the pale, I'm afraid. 

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Siding with the Sunnis

A British view on Trump's visit to Saudi Arabia.

Trump called in Riyadh for an unrelenting, international campaign against religious extremism, at the same time fatefully placing the US firmly on the Sunni Muslim side of the Middle East’s gaping Sunni-Shia divide.

Ignoring the fact that most of the region’s terror victims, for example in Iraq, are Shias, ignoring the reality that both al-Qaida and Islamic State are hardline Sunni groups and ignoring Saudi complicity in the spread of extremist beliefs, Trump chose instead to direct his fire at Shia Iran. All “nations of conscience”, he said, should band together to isolate Iran and “pray for the day when the Iranian people have the just and righteous government they deserve”.

The Reality of GOP Healthcare

Number infinity for the statement that, "I'm glad I live in a blue state and not a red state hell-hole."

Under the GOP plan, the report states, "about one-sixth of the population resides in areas in which the nongroup market would start to become unstable beginning in 2020."

To break that down: The "areas" the report refers to are mostly red states, and the "nongroup market" refers to people who do not have health insurance through an employer or through the government. 

And "unstable" means that people in those two categories who have preexisting medical problems might no longer be able to buy insurance.

Eventually, according to the report released Wednesday, markets in those states would resemble markets before Obamacare was implemented. Less healthy consumers would not be able to afford coverage, because insurers would be able to examine their medical histories and charge them more if they were likely to need expensive treatment in the future.

Republicans have claimed that their bill would maintain Obamacare's protections for those people, but according to the CBO report, about one-sixth of the total U.S. population could be at risk if they have preexisting problems. Those patients would generally live in red states.

I'm happy with the thought that I'll never have to suffer the pangs of Trumpgrets either.

Republicans Recognizing the Dickishness of Sean Hannity

And he was so good for them for so long.

As Sean Hannity hyped a conspiracy theory about the murder of a Democratic National Committee staffer last week, touting it with the zeal of a true believer without citing evidence that justified that belief, the combative Fox News host declared himself under fire and in need of backup. Lashing out at what he called “Twitter snowflakes” and “the liberal effort to silence me,”

Sounds like the tough guy, karate dude Hannity is the snowflake in this instance. 

Not only is it a toxic workplace where the harassment of women is rampant; it is also a no-fact zone. The Pulitzer Prize-winning website PolitiFact found that nearly 60 percent of the statements it checked on Fox News were either mostly or entirely false. Another 19 percent were only half true. Only Fox News viewers are likely to believe that climate change is a hoax, that there is a “war on Christmas,” that Obamacare would create “death panels,” that there is an epidemic of crime committed by immigrants (they actually have a lower crime rate than native-born Americans), that President Barack Obama forged his birth certificate and wiretapped Trump with the aid of Britain’s signals intelligence agency, and that the accusations bedeviling Trump are a product of “Russophobia.” FNC might as well stand for Fake News Channel, and its myths have had a pernicious, indeed debilitating, effect on U.S. politics.

Welcome to reality, Max Boot. I'd love to see Hannity taken down at Fox. I still want to see him and his ilk pinned on the Right forever, though. 

Friday, May 26, 2017

Statement from Elise

From the PS:

  • "Congresswoman Stefanik is encouraged that the CBO has found this legislation will lower taxes, reduce our deficits and lower premiums. Congresswoman Stefanik fought to add language to ensure Members of Congress live by the same rules as everyone else under this legislation. She also fought to have $15 billion added for maternity care and worked to support our county governments by adding language to reduce the burdensome Medicaid mandate that crushes their budgets. We will continue to work with the Senate to improve this legislation and build a healthcare system that lowers costs, improves quality and increases access for North Country families."