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Monday :: March 09, 2020

Server Issues Done, New Open Thread

The company that physically hosts TalkLeft's server is in the process of moving its servers a short distance from where they are presently located. Our server was not scheduled to be moved until midnight tonight, but apparently someone pulled the wrong plug somewhere when moving another server last night, and TalkLeft was down for several hours last night and this morning.

Obviously, we are back up now, but we are still on schedule to be moved tonight around midnight, and we should be down for only 90 minutes or so (n a perfect world).

I apologize for any inconvenience to those of you who clicked this morning and got no response -- I only realized it around 9:00 am, by which time Colin, our webmaster, was already on it and we went back up soon after.

This is now an open thread, all topics welcome.

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NYSE Suspended Trading After Stocks Tank: Trump Clueless?

An automatic circuit tripper was triggered this morning when the NYSE opened due to the worst drop in the Dow Jones average since the financial crisis of October, 2008 (and before that, 9/11):

The Dow Jones Industrial Average tanked 1,247 points — 4.8% — on pace for its worst day since December 2008, while the S&P 500 plunged 4.9%. The massive sell-off triggered a key market circuit breaker minutes after the opening bell. Trading was halted for 15 minutes until reopening at 9:49 a.m. ET. At one point in morning trading, the 30-stock Dow dropped 2,046 points and the S&P 500 cratered 7.4%.

This is the first time the trigger was activated since 1997.

As for why the Dow freaked out, it's fears over the oil trade deal and the coronavirus.[More...]

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Thursday :: March 05, 2020

Elizabeth Warren Drops Out

It's down to a two man race for the Democratic nomination -- Elizabeth Warren has suspended her campaign,

She didn't make an endorsement but said there's no rush to do so.

So after all the hub-bub with a diverse field of 20, we are down to two white almost-octogenarians. What a disappointment.

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Tuesday :: March 03, 2020

Super Tuesday Results

Super Tuesday results are streaming in. Sanders has Vermont and Utah and Biden has Virginia.

What about Mike? Will his cash seal the deal?

How was the turnout? What do the exit polls show? Most importantly, did those of you in the Super Tuesday states remember to vote?

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Monday :: March 02, 2020

Chris Matthews Retires from Hardball, Effective Tonight

Will whatever went down today at MSNBC between the network and Chris Matthews, host of Hardball, ever be fully explained? I'm not sure. But I suspect Matthews' sexist comments to a certain female and his inappropriate remarks about Hitler and Sanders, for which he apologized, are merely examples of why the network decided he was so incompatible with the politics of now as to have become obsolete.

Matthews seems to believe that covering politics today is the same as it was 20 years ago and the only changes are the names and faces of both those in front of the camera and those being interviewed. He likely believes his institutional knowledge of politics makes him a hugely valuable asset.

[More...]

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Amy Drops, Will Support Biden

Amy Klobuchar suspended her presidential campaign today, a day after Pete B. and two days after Tom Steyer.

"Faux-Dem" Mike B. is blanketing the airwaves in every Super Tuesday state. I wonder if we will see commercials with Barbra Streisand and Clint Eastood, both of whom are supporting him.

I think Elizabeth will be next to fold. But at 2 pm today MT, she tweeted out a request for funds saying she's in.

The question is, if Elizabeth drops tomorrow or Wednesday and throws her support to Bernie, can they and Bernie's "army of supporters" prevail against Biden and Bloomberg?

One thing to keep in mind: The millions of people who voted early in California. I think Bernie will get most of the early voters as Biden was a dying duck until South Carolina.

I finally decided who to vote for and dropped off my ballot today. I voted for one of the two candidates who most share my political agenda and whom I believe has the ability if elected to move us in a progressive direction.[More...]

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Sunday :: March 01, 2020

Pete B. Drops Out, Amy K. Cancels Rally

I guess we're not done with primary coverage tonight after all. Pete B. has suspended his campaign, saying the math is just not there. He also threw some shade on Bernie Sanders. Bernie on the other hand had nothing but praise for him.

Back in her home state of Minnesota, Amy K. cancelled a rally because Black Lives Matter took over the stage and according to her campaign, wouldn't relinquish it after an hour as the group had promised to do. Polls now show Amy K. may get beaten by Bernie in her home state.

My advice: Instead of freaking out over Bernie, Dems should examine what his supporters believe a Bernie presidency might look like.

While I'm still deciding who to vote for Tuesday, I do believe Bernie best represents the Democratic values I grew up with and that he is trying to bring Dems together, rather than encouraging each minority faction to go its own way. People-powered politics can beat Donald Trump if we pick a candidate who makes the tent big enough to hold all Democrats - young, old, citizen or immigrant, black, brown, latino or white, college student or factory worker, and on and on, rather than favoring one group or issue over the others.

Let's make sure we all realize who the enemy is, and that he's not in here, he's outside this room.

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Sunday Night Open Thread (All Topics)

I spent half the afternoon writing the absurdly long media open thread below, and then had two posts in a row on the primaries, so here's an open thread for all other topics, without making you scroll forever to reach the bottom.

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Sunday Night Media Open Thread: Non-Primaries Edition

Enough today about the Democratic primary. It's not like there's one totally desirable candidate we are all jumping up and down for.

In the TV department, here's what I've watched lately and can recommend:

"The Last Thing He Wanted", a film based on the book by my most favorite author, Joan Didion. It stars Anne Hathaway, William DaFoe, Ben Affleck and Rosie Perez. Hathaway plays a liberal journalist in the mid 1980's whose father, an arms smuggler to Central America (Nicaragua, Salavador, etc) cons her into making a trip on her own. Vague on details, she is supposed to collect $1 million for what he insists will be his last ever "deal".

I had read some reviews that said it was so fast-paced that at times it was hard to keep track of the plot. So before watching, I re-read the first three chapters of the book to remind myself what it was about (While I first read "Play it As it Lays" in 1971 and have probably re-read it every year or two since then and can probably recite large sections of it, this book I barely remembered. The Denver Public library has it instantly available to download as an E-book which I did, and then watched the movie. [More...]

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Biden's Sliver of a Path Forward

I keep seeing news articles about record turnouts in South Carolina. More people may have voted but the state hardly deserves praise. The state has 3.3 million Registered Voters and only 16% (500,000 of them) voted in yesterday's primary. 256k voters picked Biden, 105K picked Bernie, 60k chose Steyer, 48k picked Pete, 27k chose Warren, and 16k chose Amy. Biden got 44% of the votes.

In 2016, 371,000 Dems voted in the S.C. primary, and Hillary got 272,000 votes (57%).So notwithstanding lower turnout in 2016, Hillary got more votes than Biden did. Bernie got 96k votes, while this year Bernie got 105k votes, showing that Bernie brought out 20% of the vote on his own.

No one is mentioning the Latino vote which overwhelmingly has gone to Sanders so far. Or that in California alone, 25 million people are eligible to vote on Super Tuesday. Texas has 15 million eligible to vote. These two states have the largest number of Latino voters. [More...]

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Saturday :: February 29, 2020

Joe Biden Wins South Carolina, Who Cares?

The New York Times reports Joe Biden has been declared the winner of the South Carolina primary.

In second place right now is Tom Steyer, who spent $18.5 million on ads in the state. Then Bernie and Elizabeth. Then Amy and Pete.

More important than Biden, Sanders and Bloomberg, all of whom will be 78 by January, is who they would pick as their running mate. There is certainly no second term for any of them. [More...]

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Tuesday :: February 25, 2020

South Carolina Democrat Debate

Update: 6:55 pm MT: Bloomberg is doing better thant last time so far. There are so many cheers for him I wonder whether he paid to fly them all in. Example: Bernie complains that Bloomberg and Trump are billionaires. The crowed boos!

It's Bash Bernie night. Bloomberg claims no moderate Republicans will vote for Bernie. Bloombert

Elizabeth has a plan for education. Amy is doing better than Elizabeth and Pete B. [More...]

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Tuesday Open Thread

I'm busy at work today, no time to read the news yet. Here's an open thread, all topics welcome.

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Monday :: February 24, 2020

Harvey Weinstein Acquitted on Most Serious Counts

Harvey Weinstein was found guilty of one count of a first degree criminal sex act against Miriam "Mimi" Haley and one count of third degree rape as to Jessica Mann. He was found not guilty of the more serious predator sexual assault charges for which he could have received a life sentence. The reason for the acquittal on the top two charges: The jury did not believe Annabelle Sciorra's 30 year old account of what Weinstein did to her.

The first degree criminal sexual act charge carries a penalty of 5 to 25 years in prison. The third degree rape charge is punishable by anywhere from probation to up to 4 years.

In order to convict him on the more serious sexual predator charges, the jury would have had to have believed Annabelle Sciorra that he raped her 30 years ago and with respect to Jessica Mann, that he had committed the more serious first degree rape charge against her. That they acquitted him on all three of those charges is a testament to the work by his defense team.

[More....]

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Saturday :: February 22, 2020

Nevada Primary and Reader Poll

Nevada is voting today. Bernie Sanders seems to be the favorite. I'm still sitting on my mail ballot, waiting for a epithany to tell me who to vote for.

Here's a short poll.

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