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 firstname.lastname@example.org. 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
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.
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
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.
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.
(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
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.
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!
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
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
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
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.
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
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.
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."
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.
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
“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.
Kevin Robbins - How does that shake out when it comes to
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
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
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
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!
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.
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.
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
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.
(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
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.
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.
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
She sounds great as do all of them really. Patrick Nelson has been out campaigning forever it seems. Looking forward to the primary.
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.
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
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
Wonder how well the Trumps are sleeping these days.
Paul Krugman pointing out why Republicans are having such a hard timerepealing 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
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
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
I may not have said it for a day or two so, thank God I live in NY!
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
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.
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
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
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.
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
Lie Two: This
bill is primarily about improving health care for American families.
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.
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
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.
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
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?
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.
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
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.
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.
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.
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
Dan Coats is taking the “intelligence” out of “national
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.
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
“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.”
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.
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
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.
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.
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.
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
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.
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.
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.
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
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.
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
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.
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."