Valentine's Day Open Thread

From our heart to yours, Happy Valentine's Day!

This is an open thread, all topics welcome.

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  • Donald: Israel/Palestine (5.00 / 1) (#4)
    by Green26 on Tue Feb 14, 2017 at 11:57:30 PM EST
    I promised you, a month ago, an overview from my Jewish friends. Few posts in this open thread tonight, and Netanyahu coming to DC soon, so here goes. Below is my compilation of responses and info from my, in my view, very knowledgeable and in-the-know Jewish friends.

    Most Israelis and strong US supporters have concluded peace isn't likely.  Even those who most want peace -- and who would have given up the entire West Bank to get it -- don't believe there is any likelihood that it will happen in their lifetimes.  Therefore, changing the facts on the ground, i.e. settlements, is a logical, defensive position.  The prevailing Israeli position is:  "You won't take the land for peace; then we'll take the land (which we always claimed as ours anyway); that will make the next war easier for us; and if you ever do get your act together to negotiate peace, we'll be in a stronger position in those negotiations."  Arafat was offered peace on terms far better than will ever be achieved in the future.  He turned it down.  And now (unlike then), the Palestinians don't speak in one voice.  They have two separate wings (Fatah and Hamas) and two separate governing bodies in the West Bank and Gaza.  And there is no one group to talk peace with.  That explains the growing number of settlements in areas of land that for 2000 years were always part of what was claimed as the Jewish homeland.  The entire Middle East is a mess.  Worse than anyone could have ever imagined.  However today, most people in the know realize the mess has little or nothing to do with Israel or the Palestinians.  That mess, and that understanding, gives Israel a lot more ability to do more settlements.  Does that help the "peace process?"  Nope.  But there is no peace process, and none is in sight. So, settlements are growing and will continue to grow.

    Donald, are you watching? (none / 0) (#12)
    by Green26 on Wed Feb 15, 2017 at 01:03:53 PM EST
    Let's continue our discussion on this subject.

    Trump backed away from the two-state (none / 0) (#19)
    by Green26 on Wed Feb 15, 2017 at 10:16:47 PM EST
    solution today.

    Actually (none / 0) (#73)
    by TrevorBolder on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 04:00:38 PM EST
    All he did was make the Palestinians negotiate, now that they know the US is not wedded to a 2 state solution, they might actually negotiate in good faith. But they lost so many opportunities for peace in the last 20 years

    Happy half-price chocolates day! (5.00 / 3) (#17)
    by Towanda on Wed Feb 15, 2017 at 03:05:40 PM EST
    As ever, Spouse Towanda is celebrating both his cheapness and his feminism, having greeted me this morn with bargain chocolates on Susan B. Anthony's birthday -- a day annually celebrated nationwide by suffragists during her lifetime ("Aunt Susan's nieces," as they were known) and still celebrated by their successors, the League of Women Voters, in my state and elsewhere.

    I hope that it makes your day to know that the LWV gathering in my state always is celebrated in Janesville, hometown of Paul Ryan.

    It makes me happy (5.00 / 1) (#18)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Feb 15, 2017 at 04:53:35 PM EST
    Anti-Poverty Programs Primarily Help GOP Base (5.00 / 2) (#29)
    by vicndabx on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 11:01:29 AM EST
    Using results from the Census Bureau's Current Population Survey, with supplemental data from an Urban Institute analysis of transfer payments, the new CBPP study challenges the frequent assumption that government anti-poverty programs primarily benefit minority communities. Instead, by examining the experience of working-age adults ages 18 to 64, the study presents evidence that education levels, not race, are the key dividing line in the programs' reach.

    "Largely overlooked in the discussion of these issues to date, however, is the fact that the nation's poverty-reduction programs provide extensive support to adults lacking a college degree, including working-class whites, and that such people would be the principal losers under various proposals to cut these programs that may emerge in coming months."

    Stop voting against your interests white people.

    Trump Press Conference (5.00 / 2) (#33)
    by MKS on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 01:04:18 PM EST
    I had not watched Trump for months.

    But his Press Conference, omigod.  Blaming Hillary for all kinds of things.  Saying I am not a bad person.   Bashing Press.

    Very Nixonian:  I am not a crook, My mother was a saint, etc., Press is out to get me; the Press leaks were correct but it was fake news (huh?)....

    Lost his marbles imo.

    A few (5.00 / 2) (#38)
    by FlJoe on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 01:35:08 PM EST
    The USS Caine (none / 0) (#48)
    by KeysDan on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 02:05:31 PM EST
    After noticing that the ship's strawberry ration was one quart short, Captain Queeg launched a frantic  hunt for the missing fruit, turning the ship upside down looking for them. An unauthorized duplicate key was at large.

     When the kitchen mates admitted to eating the strawberries, Queeg ignores them and forges ahead.  Faced with a hostile and unfamiliar environment, the Captain does what worked well in the past. But, when it becomes clear that the present situation is nothing like the past one, Queeg just doubles down, and fits the facts that he has to into the narrative that he knows.

    Solutions are of his past, a past he saw as his glory days, when in earlier times he solved a shipboard crime and even got accolades for so doing.


    Humphrey Bogart (none / 0) (#52)
    by MKS on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 02:10:56 PM EST
    played Queeg well. And, Fred MacMurray was not his MY Three Sons self and was quite loathsome.

    Book good too.

    But Queeg may be a really good template on which to evaluate Trump.


    Queen was suffering from severe (none / 0) (#61)
    by jondee on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 02:57:04 PM EST
    combat fatigue incurred in the process of serving a cause greater than The Donald Incorporated.

    What's Trump's excuse?


    Yes, and (none / 0) (#65)
    by KeysDan on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 03:23:19 PM EST
    Queeg was fictional.  On the other hand, Trump is a fake, so-called president.

    " Bashing Press?" (3.50 / 2) (#189)
    by NYShooter on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 03:19:30 PM EST
    Don't we all do that? And, rightfully so, imo.

    "Press is out to get me."......Except for FOX, you gotta say this is more true than not....No?

    Now,  the part about the leaks, the sources I read are pretty unanimous in the conclusion that the leaks came from the CIA, and maybe other intel agencies. That's their job, so that's o.k. But, what's not o.k. is that the CIA is supposed to report to the President.....except when they want to flex their muscles and show the "new Guy" who's The Boss. I really, really hope you don't find that o.k. Trump's got a legitimate beef, heads will roll.

    None of this has anything to do with how good, or bad, a job Trump is doing. But, if you think Donald Trump, The President, is kind of "out of control," let's hope we don't find out what happens to our country if/when the intel agencies decide to go rogue.


    I remember us speculating intel leaks (none / 0) (#190)
    by Militarytracy on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 03:24:14 PM EST
    Weeks back. I never thought we'd have anything this rogue this soon.

    I think if the Republicans (none / 0) (#193)
    by Ga6thDem on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 04:06:32 PM EST
    in the house and the senate were doing their jobs the CIA et al would not be sending things to the press. Trump declared war on the spooks and the spooks are fighting back.

    According to Evan McMullin the entire GOP thinks that Trump has been compromised by Putin but they are more concerned about getting tax cuts for millionaires and getting rid of social security and Medicare than they are anything else. So here we are left with the spooks attempting to let the public know what is going on. If you want to know why they didn't appoint an independent panel or a special prosecutor it because they know the answer already.


    You would had to have had... (none / 0) (#34)
    by kdog on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 01:08:43 PM EST
    marbles to lose marbles MKS.

    He was smart and sane enough to win (5.00 / 1) (#36)
    by McBain on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 01:33:41 PM EST
    I understand why many don't like his policies, opinions and general demeanor. But dismissing Trump as crazy or stupid is a reach.  He did something extraordinary, something no one had ever done before and he, along with his team, deserve some credit.  

    So (5.00 / 1) (#42)
    by FlJoe on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 01:52:02 PM EST
    obsessing over the ridiculous "millions of fraudulent" votes, and many other  kooky positions that are demonstrably false is perfectly sane?

    So far, yes, perfectly sane (none / 0) (#44)
    by McBain on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 01:59:55 PM EST
    You're mistaking character traits with mental illness.  The people doing the criticizing of Trump look crazier than him.

    The other day someone was telling me how Trump lies all the time.  Then he said Trump is so crazy he actually believes what he's saying. Then he repeated how he's a liar.  This guy didn't realize he was contradicting himself over and over.  He's not along, I see it all the time in media.


    Not necessarily contradictory (none / 0) (#56)
    by MKS on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 02:21:41 PM EST
    People use the term "lie" in different ways.  Mainly used to mean telling falsehoods.

    I actually agree with what that person was telling you:  Trump actually believes his own nonsense.


    I don't know who's more (none / 0) (#72)
    by jondee on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 04:00:22 PM EST
    out-to-lunch, you or Trump.

    Birds of a feather..

    If thousands of illegal voters in New Hampshire isn't a lie, what is it?

    An extraordinary delusion? An idee fixe?

    Just proves Trump's so durn smart. He can get folks to believe anything.


    I (none / 0) (#78)
    by FlJoe on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 04:27:58 PM EST
    am not a shrink, but it seems like mental illness is manifested, at least partly through character traits.

    A liar is still a liar whether he believes his own BS or not, when that belief crosses the line into delusion you are darn right people should start to question the sanity of the liar.


    The term... (5.00 / 1) (#45)
    by kdog on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 02:01:31 PM EST
    "idiot savant" comes to mind, McBain.  You can be highly skilled at one or two things and still be a total moron.  

    Or, some think Trump's goal was never to actually win the presidency, his goal was maybe 8 months plus of free publicity and just keeping it close, then back off to brand marketing and assorted grifting with a higher profile full time.  

    If that was his goal, he was too stupid to pull it off...by foolishly underestimating the intelligence of select more equal than other voters in select more equal than other states.


    He's not Rainman (none / 0) (#51)
    by McBain on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 02:09:34 PM EST
    He knew what he was doing and did it well.  He played the media like a violin.
    Or, some think Trump's goal was never to actually win the presidency, his goal was maybe 8 months plus of free publicity and just keeping it close

    Nonsense.  If didn't' want to win, he wouldn't have worked so hard at the end.

    I don't know if he's going to be a good president. I do know his election campaign was amazing and will be studied for decades to come.  He, Kellyanne Conway and the rest of his team were incredible.


    Wow (none / 0) (#59)
    by jondee on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 02:28:26 PM EST
    Rah-rah Trump!

    You sound like you wish you could be in audience when he body-surfs. And throw your underwear onstage like women did at Sam Cooke concerts.


    Is he tired of "winning" yet? (5.00 / 1) (#60)
    by MKS on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 02:38:45 PM EST
    ... by a substantial margin of nearly 3 million (2.1%), Trump's victory in the Electoral College -- swung by a miniscule differential of 75,000 votes over three states -- was a flukish occurrence that's of little or no use to current or future political analysts, for the simple reason that its results are highly unlikely to ever again be replicated in a presidential contest.

    I daresay, however, that the 2016 presidential election will eventually become a bountiful source of endless fascination to future historians who will seek to learn how and why the United States fell so quickly and easily off the rails, prompted at least in part by the wanton outside interference of a hostile foreign power.



    Good thing Clinton won by CA by 4.3 million votes (none / 0) (#102)
    by Green26 on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 06:49:48 PM EST
    That helped her get a big lead in the popular vote. I wonder if Trump thinks they were all illegal votes? Ha.

    Let's put that in proper perspective. (none / 0) (#136)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 05:14:53 AM EST
    California is home to one in eight Americans. The state's total voter turnout in Nov. 2016 (14,181,505) exceeded that of Kentucky, Tennessee, Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, Arkansas, Oklahoma and Kansas COMBINED (13,561,966).

    Trump did indeed offer in a tweet last Nov. 28 that there was "serious voter fraud in California," and further quantified it a few weeks later with a claim that three million of its voters -- over one in five -- voted illegally. That's absolutely and positively absurd.

    Attempts by the GOP right to marginalize California's election results in the consciousness of their own voters are both sincerely ignorant and conscientiously stupid. That state's vibrant and diverse economy is the world's fifth or sixth largest, and accounts for just under 20% of our nation's entire gross domestic product. Without California, the United States would be a much poorer country.



    But the electoral college was not based on (5.00 / 1) (#145)
    by Green26 on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 10:43:09 AM EST
    the size or importance of economies, nor tied directly to population. It was based in part on population (i.e. number of people in Congress) and states/geography/etc) (i.e. 2 Senators per state). As everyone knows, the election of the president was intentionally based on the electoral college, not on the popular vote. I have read that it was intentional that population, and the popular vote, was not the basis of deciding who was president, in part to keep regions of the country from dominating the popular vote and having a very large impact on who was the president.

    Thus, the size of CA's economy is interesting and nice, but not relevant to electing the president. Hawaii has a larger say, compared to its population, in electing the president. I like the system.

    And it's not just electing the president. It's also passing bills in Congress.


    The EC was designed (5.00 / 2) (#150)
    by MKS on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 11:40:40 AM EST
    to protect the slave states.

    It is a relic.  No other national election has such a convoluted system for electing a national leader.

    The EC is fundamentally undemocratic.  The reason a democracy has moral validity is the principle that whoever gets the most votes wins.  A democracy requires the losing side to comply, and that can only have moral authority if the majority rules (or if a majority cannot be obtained, the person with the most votes wins.) Allowing the popular vote loser to often win is corrosive to democracy.  

    We also did not have the popular election of U.S. Senators in the original Constitution, so that the fact that the EC is old or part of the original Constitution is irrelevant.

    For the entire 20th Century, the EC did not matter, as the popular vote winner was the winner of the election.  Now, twice within the last 16 years, the popular vote winner did not win the election.

    There is no valid reason for the EC in today's world.  We are not trying to protect the slave states.   And, states with lesser populations have plenty of advantages by virtue of even the smallest get two U.S. Senators. So, California with 40 million people just gets two Senators, while tiny North Dakota gets two as well.

    So, you have lesser populated states with outsized power.  And this is backwards.  With modern ease of transportation and mobility, there is a reason some states have more population than others. Modern, dynamic states will draw people.   States stuck in the past, not so much.

    Moreover, when the EC was created, the U.S. was a rural country with most people living in the countryside.  The 20th Century changed that.  We are now primarily an urban country.  Another reason the EC is a relic.

    So, to concentrate power in lesser populated states, on a per capita basis, is at best to indulge in nostalgia about the 18th and 19th Centuries, and at worst, at way to decrease the power of the cities and their "diverse" populations.

    And, I would say, you are the first Democrat, which you imply you are, I have encountered who after 2000 and 2016 likes the Electoral College.



    Slavery as reason for EC (none / 0) (#156)
    by MKS on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 11:53:22 AM EST
    This Time article explains slavery as reason for EC:

    At the Philadelphia convention, the visionary Pennsylvanian James Wilson proposed direct national election of the president. But the savvy Virginian James Madison responded that such a system would prove unacceptable to the South: "The right of suffrage was much more diffusive [i.e., extensive] in the Northern than the Southern States; and the latter could have no influence in the election on the score of Negroes." In other words, in a direct election system, the North would outnumber the South, whose many slaves (more than half a million in all) of course could not vote. But the Electoral College--a prototype of which Madison proposed in this same speech--instead let each southern state count its slaves, albeit with a two-fifths discount, in computing its share of the overall count.

    Virginia emerged as the big winner--the California of the Founding era--with 12 out of a total of 91 electoral votes allocated by the Philadelphia Constitution, more than a quarter of the 46 needed to win an election in the first round. After the 1800 census, Wilson's free state of Pennsylvania had 10% more free persons than Virginia, but got 20% fewer electoral votes. Perversely, the more slaves Virginia (or any other slave state) bought or bred, the more electoral votes it would receive. Were a slave state to free any blacks who then moved North, the state could actually lose electoral votes.

    As this article points out (none / 0) (#157)
    by MKS on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 11:55:34 AM EST
    if direct election of Governors of the states is acceptable, why not for the President of the largest state?

    The Electoral College's existence is now ... (5.00 / 3) (#158)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 12:23:55 PM EST
    ... fundamentally at odds with the Equal Protection Clause of the Constitution's 14th Amendment. An electoral vote in Hawaii represents 357,500 residents, whereas the same in California represents 711,635 voters.

    Why should voters in Hawaii, a state which is but 3% of California's size by population, be given a say in the Electoral College which is proportionally twice that per capita of a California voter?

    And in my example above, those eight states I cited have 60 electoral votes between them, which is 5 more than California, even though the latter has a larger population than those eight states put together. That's not right.

    If we truly believe in the idea of "one person = one vote," then the Electoral College is fundamentally antithetical to modern democratic principles. More people live in California than reside in the 21 least populous states combined. Why shouldn't Californians' say in presidential politics be commensurate to their state's actual size, rather than minimized to the extent possible?



    The EC protects rural states (5.00 / 1) (#163)
    by Green26 on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 12:47:52 PM EST
    This is very important in my view. It also spreads electing power over the entire US geography. I like that, and believe it is fundamental to our country.

    Again, part of the reason for the EC was to keep regions from dominating the presidential election, from what I've read. Also, the EC was set up to avoid "the tyranny of the majority".

    Some of you should read the federalist papers instead of the NY Times. Better to go back to the original source.

    Arguing that governors are elected by popular vote completely misses the point of state v. federal rights.

    The EC is not a relic. It is fundamental to our country.

    The EC will never be changed. No way that rural states and states with lower population cede their authority to larger populated states, like CA


    Wrong (none / 0) (#164)
    by MKS on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 01:01:16 PM EST
    I have quoted direct source material about the creation of the EC.  It was about protecting the power of the slave states and the 3/5 rule regarding slaves.

    You have misused the "phrase tyranny of the majority."  First, that phrase assumes that the general rule is majority rule.  You apparently disagree.

    The phrase "tyranny of the majority" is meant to refer to rights of the minority.  Avoiding the "tyranny of the majority" means the "majority" cannot vote to take away fundamental rights of the minority.  It is not about general governance.   It is about the Bill of Rights, which protects the rights of the individual from the "tyranny of the majority."  And many conservatives misuse that phrase to argue against democracy.  Maybe you don't, but I do like democracy.  

    Many conservatives are fundamentally afraid of democracy and really prefer an oligarchy.  


    Conservatives also seem to have (5.00 / 1) (#188)
    by jondee on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 03:02:18 PM EST
    an abiding fondness for the money=speech equation and Citizens United.

    Because they're deeply concerned about protecting the Right's of the little guy in rural states.


    Another way of saying it protects... (none / 0) (#166)
    by kdog on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 01:04:16 PM EST
    rural states is that it f*cks states where more Americans happen to be naturally born in, or choose to live in...f*cks them right in the arse.  With the extra kick in the junk being these populous states denied their rightful voice in the presidency provide the federal government with more revenue than the overheard voices in rural states.

    The constitutional make-up of the Senate is enough protection for the rural states, as is the blessed Bill of Rights protection for us all from the tyranny of majorities.  


    What I find (5.00 / 1) (#178)
    by Ga6thDem on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 02:00:00 PM EST
    interesting is we liberals are willing to give conservatives a voice in blue states like NY and CA while conservatives are willing to roll their brethren under the bus in those states.

    The EC is an outdated relic of the past. However conservatives clinging to it really has nothing to do with tradition and more with the fact that they believe they would never win another presidential election if it was gotten rid of. So instead of doing the hard work of making the GOP a modern party they would rather embrace the relics of slavery. This just shows where the GOP thinking is these days.


    Yep. (none / 0) (#168)
    by MKS on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 01:07:56 PM EST
    You NYers are screwed just like us here in California.

    But Alabama and Kansas voters just that much more real Americans than we are.


    Not to make a Rural-Urban/Suburban... (none / 0) (#172)
    by kdog on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 01:14:54 PM EST
    civil war out of it...to Green26's point, I don't wanna see anybody get run roughshod over, I don't knock Alabama or Kansas the same number of senators as us, it's just this electoral college bullsh&t is one too many thumbs on the scale of democracy here in our constitutional republic.  

    They runnin' roughshod over we the people in the high population states, and that just ain't right, anyway you slice it.  


    The EC is a very good system (none / 0) (#180)
    by Green26 on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 02:07:08 PM EST
    It isn't going away. Nice checks and balances. Glad that big populus states and cities don't get to decide the election. Keep chasing your windmills.

    If it is (none / 0) (#182)
    by Ga6thDem on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 02:12:29 PM EST
    a system that brought us Trump then yes, it is not a check and balance system. The electors were supposed to be check on someone like Trump assuming office but they didn't do their job did they?

    As a matter of fact it seems the only checks we have on Trump right now is the judicial system because the GOP sure is not doing their job.


    It's not about them "deciding" (none / 0) (#183)
    by jondee on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 02:22:26 PM EST
    anything, it's about the citizens in those states having the Same, not more, rights as the citizens in other states.

    Exactly... (none / 0) (#184)
    by kdog on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 02:32:36 PM EST
    it's basic equality in the voting booth that is sought, not "dominance".  

    It would be better for the conservatives in New York & California too...their vote in the presidential election will actually have some meaning and bearing on the outcome.  Same for the down home country liberals.


    Never say never.. (none / 0) (#170)
    by jondee on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 01:12:31 PM EST
    I remember Jeanne Kirkpatrick giving a talk in the eighties, and saying in that hard, flinty voice hers that the Soviet Union  would Never come apart because they were so well organized and regimented in everything they did.

    Conservative-minded types fetishize past historical precedents in the same way that orthodox and fundamentalist religious types fetishize their traditions.


    Great Argument! (none / 0) (#167)
    by MKS on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 01:05:59 PM EST
    The 14th Amendment post dates the EC and even the EC Amendment in 1804.

    Equal Protection. Right On!  My vote in California is not equal to the vote of a person in Alabama.

    Ha! And I have standing.  So, should I not sue???


    The 14th Amendment (none / 0) (#177)
    by MKS on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 01:43:01 PM EST
    was intended, in large part, to wipe away the vestiges of slavery.   The EC is a vestige of slavery.  It should be wiped away...Just like  Jim Crow that prevented People of Color from voting.

    The EC undervalues "urban" (translation: votes of People of Color) votes.

    It works.


    Lawrence Lessig (none / 0) (#173)
    by MKS on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 01:15:14 PM EST
    has argued the EC is an unconstitutional violation of Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment.

    And he cites Bush v. Gore, which relied on an Equal Protection argument to stop the Florida recount.


    Someone should sue.


    Lessig is brilliant, but a wacko (5.00 / 1) (#202)
    by Peter G on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 04:54:18 PM EST
    A provision of the Constitution cannot be unconstitutional. Nor does the Constitution permit repeal by implication. Sadly, until the 12th Amend is repealed, it must stand. At least that's my view of constitutional law. And Lessig being a Harvard Law professor does not persuade me otherwise.

    IMO, this is what we as progressive & indy (none / 0) (#175)
    by vicndabx on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 01:31:24 PM EST
    need to rally around.  Removal of the Electoral College.

    Let history be the counterargument to its continued usage, just as you pointed out.


    Trump claimed that (none / 0) (#147)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 11:07:28 AM EST
    three million of it's [California's] voters -- over one in five -- voted illegally

    Are you sure you have that right?


    You're right. (none / 0) (#154)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 11:48:33 AM EST
    That "3 million illegal votes" claim was actually first asserted without evidence by Gregg Phillips of VoteFraud.org, which was then cited by Alex Jones' conspiracy website InfoWars.

    And although Trump's spokesperson later pointed to InfoWars as the source of the then-President-elect's information when pressed by reporters, Trump himself did not offer that particular claim specifically. He merely referenced "millions of people who voted illegally" on Twitter.

    White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer then further reasserted Trump's belief about millions of illegal voters during his own combative Jan. 24 press briefing, which re-ignited the uproar.



    trump up false ones. Badda bing.

    Can't tell yet, (none / 0) (#155)
    by NYShooter on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 11:50:56 AM EST
    they're still counting votes.

    p.s. It took one day to count the Brexit vote....30,000,000 + voters, and, hand counted to boot.


    The major issue hanging up the count in California is absentee ballots, which now account for nearly one-third of the vote totals. As long as the ballot is postmarked by Election Day, city and county clerks are obligated to count it.

    So according to you (none / 0) (#201)
    by jimakaPPJ on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 04:53:30 PM EST
    That state's vibrant and diverse economy is the world's fifth or sixth largest, and accounts for just under 20% of our nation's entire gross domestic product.

    That means CA gets to choose the President.

    I mean, so much for being  a republic. We'll just have good ole democracy anarchy.


    I Couldn't Agree Less (none / 0) (#89)
    by RickyJim on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 05:25:22 PM EST
    Finally the Hamilton/Madison screwup in not getting their plans for the electoral college implemented has come up to haunt the country big time.  Direct election of the President is a horrible idea and in the last presidential election has lead to  a situation analogous to the country being piloted by somebody whose only knowledge of flying has come from reading comic books.  I no more admire Trump's ability to fool around half the people enough to get elected than I admire PewDiePie's ability to make millions on Youtube.  

    Trump's not crazy or stupid. (5.00 / 2) (#49)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 02:06:11 PM EST
    He's narcissistic, self-indulgent, mean-spirited, misogynistic, bigoted, grossly insensitive, shockingly untrustworthy and irresponsible, intellectually lazy and incurious, willfully ignorant and perhaps worst of all, appallingly immature for someone who's 70 years old.

    Bigoted? Probably the (none / 0) (#70)
    by KeysDan on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 03:53:20 PM EST
    first time a Court found that a President of the United States acted out of bigotry. A federal district court in Virginia ruled that the president acted with animus against Muslims when he issued the travel ban.

     The Court laid out damning evidence such as the campaign pledge to ban Muslims, which is still on the web site, Giuliani's give-a-way, and the failure of lawyers who wrote the ban to consult national security officers. And, Trump's own statements for making America Great Again.


    Sure. (none / 0) (#39)
    by jondee on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 01:41:21 PM EST
    Charles Whitman did something no one had ever done before, either.

    Though, in history there have been instances of superficially charismatic demagogues defying the odds and rising to seats of power..

    The results have been mixed.


    Ridiculous comparisons weaken your arguments (5.00 / 1) (#40)
    by McBain on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 01:46:03 PM EST
    The left should hire a public relations expert to better express their displeasure with Trump.  Ashley Judd and Michael Moore aren't going win over swing state voters.

    Nothing extraordinary (none / 0) (#41)
    by jondee on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 01:48:29 PM EST
    about Trump winning in a country in which, according to surveys, a majority of the citizenry can't name the three branches of government, and think Ramadan is a brand of cheap noodles.

    Why didn''t Clinton figure out how to sway (none / 0) (#46)
    by McBain on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 02:03:13 PM EST
    these "uneducated" voters? Why didn't other republicans win the nomination?

    Some of it had to do with right place/ right time luck.  Most of it had to do with smart decisions and hard work.  


    I agree with Armando (5.00 / 1) (#57)
    by MKS on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 02:26:09 PM EST
    The WWC was not wooed by an appeal to economic anxiety is his theory.  

    And, the circle he is trying to square is how to woo  WWC without ditching People of Color.


    And no cheating or outside help? (none / 0) (#53)
    by jondee on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 02:12:02 PM EST
    none at all?

    Or is that just part of the "smart hard work" you're talking about?


    Bad on Hillary (5.00 / 2) (#58)
    by MKS on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 02:27:25 PM EST
    for not getting Comey to violate standards to boost her campaign.

    She had Donna Brazile doign unethical (none / 0) (#62)
    by McBain on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 02:58:17 PM EST
    things for her.... she had most of the media in her corner but Hillary wimped out.  Didn't spend enough time in the swing states.  

    If only she had (5.00 / 2) (#63)
    by MKS on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 02:59:36 PM EST
    secret communications with Russian Intelligence and convinced them to leak Trump's emails.

    That's the (5.00 / 2) (#80)
    by Ga6thDem on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 04:39:25 PM EST
    myth conservatives seem to be shopping. Ohio isn't a swing state? Florida isn't a swing state?

    Her biggest mistake seems to be not calling up Vladimir Putin and offering him something in return for the presidency.


    Actually (none / 0) (#82)
    by TrevorBolder on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 04:43:08 PM EST
    It looks like Putin is Trumps stooge, lol.


    Moscow is instructing Russian state media to reduce their favorable coverage of President Trump, Bloomberg reported on Thursday.

    Three people familiar with the matter told the news source that the order echoes growing concerns from top Russian officials that the Trump administration is not going to be as pro-Russian as they initially thought.

    One source told Bloomberg that the Kremlin justified its decision by stating that Russians are no longer interested in the the details of Trump's transition

    LOL (none / 0) (#84)
    by Ga6thDem on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 04:49:57 PM EST
    When an espionage asset has been exposed you change course.

    Let's just have an independent investigation or appoint a special prosecutor to handle it. Don't you think Americans have the right to know whether Donald has been compromised by Putin or not? Frankly it's looking more and more like he has been due to the fact that parts of the Steele dossier have been verified. I wonder if the NSA has a copy of that golden showers tape already?


    lol (none / 0) (#92)
    by jondee on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 06:13:04 PM EST
    What kind of libertarianism is this when your hero The Donald buddies up with "strong leaders" who tell the media what to report and what not to report?

    What would Evan McMullin say?

    That Trump is a "domestic enemy"? or that all our concerns are a big nothing-burger?



    Evan McMullin (none / 0) (#94)
    by Ga6thDem on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 06:17:42 PM EST
    I can tell you what he says. He says join the resistance because if Republicans do no join the resistance they are going completely eaten alive over the next few years.

    Stop (none / 0) (#96)
    by TrevorBolder on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 06:27:28 PM EST
    Being childish. Act your age. The Donald is not my hero, that has been made quite clear.
    I just react to the hair on fire approach about anything that happens.
    Flynn's call with the Russian ambassador was perfectly fine, his conduct afterwards got him fired, but a deal because of the intense media scrutiny over the illegally leaked classified call.
    The Donald's relationship with the media...reality tv.
    But it helps him, the media has lousy polling numbers, and The Donalds are going up

    You've been posting (5.00 / 1) (#105)
    by jondee on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 06:53:23 PM EST
    right-to-the-letter, wholy unoriginal right-wing talking points since you arrived here, and you tell Other people to act their age?

    Which maturity comes the ability to think independently. A twelve-year-old can reword what they're all saying at Freerepublic.

    Or is "The Donald" going to stand as your one innovative contribution?


    Oh stop it (5.00 / 1) (#107)
    by TrevorBolder on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 07:00:25 PM EST
    Grow up.
    First I am a libertarian, now its right wing talking points
    No, just deal with the fact, I speak how I feel.
    Those are my beliefs, my preferred policies.
    So yes, stop your tantrum. Can't you discuss politics and current events without throwing around childish insults better suited to grade school

    Wow (none / 0) (#110)
    by jondee on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 07:30:05 PM EST
    you really do live in your own bubble.

    Obvious, very easily verifiable facts are now personal affronts.

    I can see why you identify with The Donald.


    Trump's poll numbers (none / 0) (#97)
    by MKS on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 06:30:50 PM EST
    are going up?  Really?

    Not that polling is relevant, and it is not, but his job approval numbers everywhere but discredited Rasmussen are historically low.

    You must really love the guy.  You even twist data in the same way he does.


    The only (none / 0) (#100)
    by Ga6thDem on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 06:43:42 PM EST
    poll that has good numbers for Trump is the fake polling outfit Rasmussen. There have been numerous polls including Gallup daily tracking with him around 40% approval. Rasmussen apparently has gone back to their old tricks like when they tried to say George W. Bush was going to carry California by 2 points in 2000.

    2 pts in California in 2000? (none / 0) (#104)
    by MKS on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 06:52:59 PM EST
    Ha!  I guess Rove really wanted to get the state.

    All these conservatives say they hate us, but they do not--they really, really like us.


    what unethical "things" did (none / 0) (#118)
    by ding7777 on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 08:38:19 PM EST
    Hillary have Donna Brazile doing?

    Regurgitating emails and Benghazi daily is not having the media in her corner


    When she was with CNN, Brazile (none / 0) (#123)
    by McBain on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 09:17:02 PM EST
    leaked debate questions to Clinton's campaign before the debate.  Team Clinton didn't tell anyone.  



    switcheroo (5.00 / 3) (#137)
    by ding7777 on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 05:42:43 AM EST
    your original claim that "[Hillary] had Donna Brazile doign unethical things for her" to "Brazile leaked debate questions to Clinton's campaign" is a major walk back but still does not show Hillary's complicity (if any)

    And who would ever think that a town hall question in Flint, MI would be about lead in the drinking water?


    Call it what you want, ding (none / 0) (#143)
    by McBain on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 10:39:13 AM EST
    Brazile's actions to benefit Clinton were highly unethical.  Had Clinton come forward and announced she had questions in advance, she would be clean... but she didn't.



    Check (5.00 / 1) (#149)
    by Ga6thDem on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 11:33:58 AM EST
    fact checking on that. NPR reported that statement you are making as being false.

    Did Comey lie? (none / 0) (#199)
    by jimakaPPJ on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 04:47:17 PM EST
    And do you support the leak of Flynn info?

    You couldn't be more wrong. (none / 0) (#151)
    by Chuck0 on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 11:41:37 AM EST
    So-called human Trump didn't win out of any brilliance, but rather the completely and total stupidity of a huge swath of the American people. I have considered Americans to be one of stupidest populations for many years. It was all brought to bear in this election.

    Ever watch Jay Leno's jay-walking bits on the Tonight Show. Great evidence show of stupid Americans. I believe Jimmy Kimmel does something similar as well.


    You don't understand (none / 0) (#200)
    by Peter G on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 04:47:33 PM EST
    that was the brilliant thing he did.

    My Mama was on campus (none / 0) (#50)
    by MKS on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 02:06:35 PM EST
    when Mr. Whitman took up his rifle.

    Really? (5.00 / 1) (#54)
    by jondee on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 02:15:04 PM EST
    Sorry I brought it up. It was fresh in my mind because we watched that PBS Independent Lense program the other night.

    Didn't bother her (none / 0) (#55)
    by MKS on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 02:19:22 PM EST
    I was a kid and she was going back to school.

    Also, part of the chilling opening scenes in Full Metal Jacket....as the Drill Sergeant regales his recruits with the tale.  


    Green was mentioning (none / 0) (#37)
    by jondee on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 01:34:56 PM EST
    the Logan Act on the other thread, and in that connection, that littlest of little fish and lowest of low-hanging fruit, Jane Fonda..

    I'm guessing that the main reason violations of the Logan Act haven't been pursued more aggressively is because of the monumentally messy can of worms that could potentially have been opened.

    After all, what were the pipsqueak efforts of Barbarella in North Vietnam compared to, say, the "corporate persons" like IBM, Coca-Cola, Standard Oil, and Ford doing business with Hitler and the Third Reich?

    Yes, it's a deep abiding mystery why violations of the Logan Act aren't pursued more aggressively..


    Did Jane Fonda ever suggest that ... (5.00 / 2) (#66)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 03:28:54 PM EST
    ... she represented the United States in some official or semi-official capacity during her 1968 visit to North Vietnam, or did she otherwise engage in negotiations with that foreign power while it had an active dispute with the United States?

    The Logan Act is named after Dr. George Logan of Philadelphia, a Pennsylvania physician, state legislator and -- this is important here -- pacifist of the Quaker faith. In 1798, during a period of active but undeclared naval hostilities with France known as the Quasi-War, Dr. Logan traveled to that country upon his own initiative and at his own expense, and proceeded to engage in private and unauthorized discussions with senior members of the French revolutionary government such as Foreign Minister Lord Charles Talleyrand, advising them on how to sway public opinion in the United States and preclude an all-out war.

    As the American government was then formally engaged in direct negotiations with France in a similar effort to seek rapprochement and thus end the undeclared nQuasi-War between the two nations, Logan's presence and activities in Paris seemingly undercut the efforts of the U.S. diplomats who had been dispatched there by President John Adams for that expressed purpose.

    It proved politically embarrassing to President Adams and his administration when Dr. Logan successfully persuaded the French government to undertake two key gestures of good will, by lifting their trade embargo then in place against the United States and releasing American sailors then being held prisoner in French jails as a direct result of the Quasi-War. That led to a subsequent breakthrough in the official negotiations, which ultimately brought an official end to the undeclared hostilities.

    While Dr. Logan obviously acted with sincerity and likely short-circuited the drive to seek a formal declaration of war with France by the Federalist-controlled Congress, his unauthorized mission to Paris prompted the subsequent passage of the Logan Act in January 1799. Dr. Logan himself escaped prosecution because the U.S. Constitution prohibits retroactive punishment of individuals under a law which did not then exist at the time of the alleged offense.

    Anyway, that's the genesis of the Logan Act, which has never been repealed and never been formally enforced, despite repeated threats by select presidents and / or public officials to do so at various times over the past 75 years.



    Generally, right wingers (none / 0) (#67)
    by MKS on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 03:37:26 PM EST
    are the ones who bring up Jane Fonda.

    She still haunts their dreams (5.00 / 1) (#69)
    by jondee on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 03:49:11 PM EST
    like the legendary succubus attacking their precious bodily fluids.

    My bad. 1968 was when Nixon deliberately scuttled the Paris peace talks.

    That said, I find it somewhat amusing but sad that so many of today's conservatives will still fall all over themselves in condemning the former, while simultaneously and conveniently ignoring the latter.

    Yet of those two alleged violations of the Logan Act, only one had a profoundly adverse impact upon untold thousands of Americans and Vietnamese and their families, all of whom subsequently paid a horrific personal price as a direct consequence of it.



    I know, Jane Fonda (none / 0) (#43)
    by MKS on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 01:56:22 PM EST
    But he knows a lot of important people.  

    Saw this re: Logan Act (none / 0) (#47)
    by vicndabx on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 02:05:20 PM EST
    Maybe students of the law can chime in w/their opinions:

    Bloomberg Link


    The Logan Act would almost certainly violate today's understanding of the First Amendment. It's a direct prohibition on speech, so would have to satisfy strict scrutiny, the highest level of judicial review.

    That means the law would have to serve a compelling government interest and adopt the least restrictive means to achieving that goal.

    I would think preventing unauthorized negotiation on behalf of the US serves a compelling government interest but IANAL.


    From Logan Act WaPost link in other thread (none / 0) (#68)
    by Green26 on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 03:41:05 PM EST
    That's not to say violations are never serious, even if no charges are brought. Richard Nixon, for example, almost certainly violated the Logan Act with his back-channel dealings with South Vietnam during the 1968 presidential campaign, which helped scuttle President Lyndon Johnson's attempts to begin peace negotiations before he left office. A private citizen's communications with a foreign government can still be deleterious to U.S. interests if prosecutors opt not to pursue the matter.

    "Even with no convictions, the Logan Act has stuck around in American political discourse. But its real purpose has been as a weapon to brandish by accusing partisan opponents of violating it.

    Flynn joins a list of Americans, including Herbert Hoover, Henry Wallace, Nixon [undercutting Johnson on possible talks to resolve Viet Nam], Jane Fonda, Jesse Jackson, Jim Wright and Ross Perot, whom adversaries have speculated may have broken the law. Wallace, a former vice president, was accused of violating the Logan Act after he toured Europe to stump against the Marshall Plan and the Truman Doctrine in the early days of the Cold War. The Nixon White House considered charges against Fonda for her foray to North Vietnam in 1972."

    I saw some Kissinger stuff in another article too.


    Think you can (none / 0) (#75)
    by TrevorBolder on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 04:09:25 PM EST
    Take Flynn off that list.

    A nothingburger


    A current U.S. intelligence official tells NPR's Mary Louise Kelly that there is no evidence of criminal wrongdoing in the transcripts of former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn's conversations with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak, although the official noted that doesn't rule out the possibility of illegal actions.

    The official also says that there are recordings as well as transcripts of the calls, and that the transcripts don't suggest Flynn was acting under orders in his conversations.

    Once again (5.00 / 2) (#85)
    by FlJoe on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 05:02:31 PM EST
    you miss the point, Flynn's transactions were never expected to meet the seemingly infinity high bar for prosecution under the Logan act. IMO his actions lie somewhere between Fonda's silly photo-shoot and Nixon's(and some would Regan's) outright treason. I would place it right there along with Cotton's letter to the Mullah's, but at least they didn't lie about it.

    Taken at face value, Flynn, an unvetted official, wielding immense power, answering only to one man, was pursuing his own agenda with the Russians and felt compelled to lie about it to his own superiors.

    That is not normal, that is definitely not a nothing-burger.


    Where do you come up with this? (none / 0) (#86)
    by TrevorBolder on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 05:07:14 PM EST
    He has spoken with the ambassador for the prior 4 years at least, the Russian ambassador asked him about the 35 people deported back to Russia.
    Flynn, as part of a incoming administration , said he would look into it.
    Your hair is on fire to.

    There is absolutely nothing wrong with that.


    Lord love a duck (5.00 / 3) (#88)
    by MKS on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 05:22:36 PM EST
    The National Security Advisor to the President just resigned.  Less than a month on the job.  That is not a nothingburger.

    If his conversation with the Russians about sanctions was no big deal, why did he lie about it?  Obviously he felt the truth was a liability.

    When the top National Security Official in the White House resigns because he lied (according to Spicer) about conversations with an adversary, that is very big news.

    But Trump's base will always take his side--no matter what.  


    Why did (none / 0) (#93)
    by Ga6thDem on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 06:15:13 PM EST
    Trump fire him then if he did nothing wrong or the axis of Priebus/Pence and Ryan push Trump into firing Flynn? Flynn has long been known to be a Putin stooge. Apparently Republicans embraced that as being fine until he called the Russian ambassador or maybe there's something on those taped conversations that were very bad.

    Shorter Trevor: (none / 0) (#79)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 04:31:36 PM EST
    And it still (none / 0) (#81)
    by TrevorBolder on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 04:39:52 PM EST
    Looks like you set your on fire yesterday all for naught

    From the Washington Post tonight: (none / 0) (#130)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 11:44:32 PM EST
    "Former national security adviser Michael Flynn denied to FBI agents in an interview last month that he had discussed U.S. sanctions against Russia with that country's ambassador to the United States before President Trump took office, contradicting the contents of intercepted communications collected by intelligence agencies, current and former U.S. officials said.

    "The Jan. 24 interview potentially puts Flynn in legal jeopardy. Lying to the FBI is a felony offense. But several officials said it is unclear whether prosecutors would attempt to bring a case, in part because Flynn may parse the definition of the word 'sanctions.' He also followed his denial to the FBI by saying he couldn't recall all of the conversation, officials said." (Emphasis is mine.)



    Does the FBI (5.00 / 1) (#138)
    by FlJoe on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 07:27:50 AM EST
    always grant do-overs?
    Flynn initially told investigators sanctions were not discussed. But FBI agents challenged him, asking if he was certain that was his answer. He said he didn't remember.

     FBI: "about those transcripts?"
     Flynn: "lie,lie,lie"
     FBI: "we know you're lying,is that final answer?
     Flynn: "I'll change that to I don't recall"
     FBI: "alrighty then, no harm no foul, all is good"

    Link (none / 0) (#139)
    by FlJoe on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 07:48:33 AM EST
    The problem with (3.25 / 4) (#191)
    by NYShooter on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 03:44:40 PM EST
    this kind of reporting is that the reporter is not quoting what was said, but rather, using inappropriate, interpretative, suggestive words like, "they discussed sanctions....." leaving the viewer/reader with the distinct impression that an entire discussion/debate, regarding sanctions, took place. It may have been something as simple as the Russian saying, "I hope we'll get a chance to discuss this whole sanctions business." And, Flynn answering, "of course, but that will have to wait for the appropriate time."

    If I was the President I'd be pretty steamed also.

    Personally, I think it's a very dangerous path the country has embarked on. It's tough enough without the Partisan Media distorting things further.


    Leaks (5.00 / 1) (#194)
    by FlJoe on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 04:14:32 PM EST
    and the reporting on them is problematic, however the only other option is to put blind trust on the "official line" which is obviously fraught with peril.

    An honest search for the truth should be the only job of the press, with them able to gather info from all sources, whether through official or non-official sources.

    If the press has multiple credible sources telling them something, it is their duty to report it. Just because you and the powers that be do not like it doesn't mean its dangerous or partisan.

    In the Flynn case, they were told that sanctions were discussed by at least nine sources. They were quoting these sources not making inappropriate, interpretive and suggestive words as you baselessly accuse them of.


    I hear ya Shooter... (3.00 / 2) (#192)
    by kdog on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 03:55:20 PM EST
    alotta peeps only thinking about the ends, not nearly enough thinking about the means.  And things are tough all over on that front.

    Truthful leaks (none / 0) (#35)
    by KeysDan on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 01:31:23 PM EST
    undergo Pence's conversion therapy and, Voila! Trump's Fake News.

    Dear God (5.00 / 2) (#87)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 05:19:50 PM EST
    The Trump press conference

    A bigly total disastuh! (none / 0) (#108)
    by desertswine on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 07:06:03 PM EST
    I have to say, believe me.

    Trump has become so unhinged, he's apparently frightened Adm. Robert Harward, who's rejected the White House offer to become the NSA director.

    Not NSA, I believe (none / 0) (#132)
    by Peter G on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 12:17:26 AM EST
    but rather, the NSC.

    He turned down the NSA position (none / 0) (#133)
    by Militarytracy on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 01:28:45 AM EST
    On the NSC, which I am told is supposed to be referred to as the APNSA, or the guy who eats the Trump $hit sandwich ;)

    You're right, of course. (none / 0) (#134)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 02:34:55 AM EST
    The NSA chairs the NSC. "NSA director" is a redundancy from the U.S. Department of Redundancy Department.



    There is a "NSA director" but that's (none / 0) (#140)
    by Peter G on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 08:51:56 AM EST
    someone else entirely -- the director of the National Security Agency.

    And Harward has turned Trump down (5.00 / 1) (#90)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 05:56:58 PM EST
    Says no thanks to being Trump's National Security Adviser.

    Leon Panetta claims there hasn't been an actual Security Council meeting since Trump took office. Also said nobody in the White House has a clue what to do if we had an actual crisis right now.

    What??? (none / 0) (#91)
    by MKS on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 06:10:33 PM EST
    The Russians are probing.....

    Harward spoke to Jim Sciutto (none / 0) (#98)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 06:41:34 PM EST
    Used language that could not be shared on the news. He is very duty bound to his country but the White House is in chaos (word Sciutto chose to describe Harward's unrepeatable words). Also lines of authority caused Harward to decline.

    A military site member claims that Flynn's deputy KT McFarland is to remain on the council and that was an absolute NO for Harward. I don't know if that part is true. That could be just gossipy hearsay.


    Good Lord (5.00 / 1) (#101)
    by Ga6thDem on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 06:49:23 PM EST
    McFarland and Bannon on the security council? We had better pray that nothing does happen because beside the complete chaos that would ensue in the white house they also wouldn't even be able to understand what was happening.

    A finely tuned machine... (none / 0) (#112)
    by desertswine on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 07:58:42 PM EST
    A friend of Harward's said he was reluctant to take the job because the White House seems so chaotic. Harward called the offer a "s*** sandwich," the friend said.

    Does it rhyme with "quit handswitch"? (none / 0) (#135)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 02:37:53 AM EST
    Like (none / 0) (#95)
    by FlJoe on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 06:19:38 PM EST
    a "well oiled machine", indeed
    All together now,
    Mental wounds not healing
    Who and what's to blame
    I'm goin' off the rails on a crazy train
    I'm goin' off the rails on a crazy train

    I like how Trump is pissed because (none / 0) (#99)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 06:43:06 PM EST
    News reports the White House is in chaos.

    But Harward says it's in chaos too.


    Stupid fools (none / 0) (#103)
    by Ga6thDem on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 06:51:41 PM EST
    thought they could create chaos and disaster for the "little people" while they were going to have a well oiled machine being too stupid to realize that creating chaos among the "little people" is going to filter that chaos right up to the top where they are perched.

    I don't think they can wipe (none / 0) (#115)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 08:24:25 PM EST
    Their own butts.

    CIA hacks French election (5.00 / 1) (#109)
    by linea on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 07:29:55 PM EST
    RELEASE: Full text of CIA orders targetting French presidential election including Hollande, Sarkozy & Le Pen

    "French political parties were targeted for infiltration by the CIA's human ("HUMINT") and electronic ("SIGINT") spies in the seven months leading up to France's 2012 presidential election.... Named specifically as targets are the French Socialist Party (PS), the National Front (FN) and Union for a Popular Movement (UMP)..."


    Well (5.00 / 2) (#111)
    by Ga6thDem on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 07:56:25 PM EST
    thanks for letting us know what the Putin propaganda organ is saying about the French elections.

    pick on someone else (none / 0) (#120)
    by linea on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 08:57:01 PM EST
    shorter Ga6thDem:. "if the classified information published on wikileaks doesnt fit my preconceived narative then im going to rudely dismiss you!"

    Sorry (none / 0) (#122)
    by Ga6thDem on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 09:03:54 PM EST
    but I have no use for Wikileaks. They take aim and selectively leak.

    You have got to be a troll (5.00 / 2) (#117)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 08:27:48 PM EST
    you"re the troll (1.00 / 1) (#119)
    by linea on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 08:46:07 PM EST
    it's wiki leaks.

    (not actually in the military)tracy: "i put my fingers in my ears. i dont care if it's true. i call everybody a troll. if you disagree with me, you're a commie lover."


    Commie lover? (5.00 / 1) (#126)
    by MKS on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 09:28:04 PM EST
    Well, the epithet, although much dated, went something like:  Commie, pinko, bleeding heart liberal.

    Archie Bunker said it best.  But much ancient history.

    And, applying it to MT?  Not such a good idea.


    Yes....catch up (none / 0) (#128)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 09:36:37 PM EST
    My preferred slur here would be KGB lover or dictator enabler.

    You don't wanna bring up (none / 0) (#121)
    by jondee on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 08:57:48 PM EST
    trolls or dwarves to anyone from Norway.

    Definate fightin' words. Serious sh*t.


    You are from Norway? (none / 0) (#125)
    by MKS on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 09:26:04 PM EST
    im a (none / 0) (#129)
    by linea on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 10:38:20 PM EST
    u.s. citizen living in seattle
    thank you

    This is crap (none / 0) (#127)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 09:34:15 PM EST
    This is garden variety state department cables that every state department on the planet creates in some form, and then wiki leaks tries to conflate and tell me some sort of grand conspiracy they create around them.

    Go sell coo coo somewhere else. As if these documents arent possibly outright forgeries or embellished.


    According to Alt Sec of State (5.00 / 1) (#113)
    by Ga6thDem on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 08:00:23 PM EST
    the press conference today was geared to appeal to Trump's base of supporters. While 60% of the country thinks Trump is nuts and the rest of the world thinks he is nuts his speaking in the language of Breitbart and this rally in Florida are all about his firing up his voter base and attempting to keep more Republicans from defecting.

    CNN contributor said the same thing (none / 0) (#116)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 08:26:51 PM EST
    This is what he did on the campaign trail when things weren't going well. He put the press in the line of fire, acted tough, and headed to the next rally.

    I think he believes this stupid rally will right his ship.


    Breaking: Polanski (5.00 / 1) (#153)
    by oculus on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 11:48:23 AM EST
    See The Guardian.

    Some of you may remember (5.00 / 2) (#162)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 12:38:41 PM EST
    that a guy I briefly coached, when he was young, competed last summer in the Rio Olympics. Very exciting.

    Well, here's the next one coming of age.

    Tara Davis sets new U.S. #1 and national record high school indoor Long Jump mark of 21'11" shattering existing 36-year-old national record mark of 21'7.5".

    Wrong link Coach... (none / 0) (#169)
    by kdog on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 01:08:54 PM EST
    stick to molding world class track and field talent, and leave the cut and paste to the computer geeks! (j/k)

    Ah jeez (5.00 / 1) (#171)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 01:14:41 PM EST
    Here you go: Tara Davis.

    That was some leap! n/t (none / 0) (#174)
    by kdog on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 01:17:18 PM EST
    That was a big one. Amazing athlete (5.00 / 1) (#176)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 01:36:43 PM EST
    and funny, outgoing, warm, and personable.

    Look out Tokyo... (none / 0) (#186)
    by kdog on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 02:39:51 PM EST
    Sh*t she could probably Triple Jump to Tokyo from LA...Hawaii, Midway Atoll, and Konichiwa B*tches!

    Leaks, "Dark State", Democracy, US, Trum (5.00 / 1) (#165)
    by Green26 on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 01:01:35 PM EST
    Good NY Times article on the subject. This is a huge concern of mine. It isn't a Repub v. Dem or liberal v. conservative issue. Leaks now at unprecedented levels. Early stages, but comparisons being made to countries like Egypt.


    Comparing (none / 0) (#179)
    by Ga6thDem on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 02:05:44 PM EST
    Trump to people like Erdogan is unlikely to help make the case against "deep state".

    This problem actually can be resolved here in the US if the Republicans would do their d*amn job. It's come out today that the entire GOP knew Trump was compromised by Russia long ago. They had numerous chances to get rid of him by doing an oppo dump during the primary and then getting rid of him at the convention but they were too cowardly to do any of that.

    And besides you can hardly argue that Trump was "democratically" elected when you had interference by the FBI and then put in office by a gerrymandered relic of slavery.


    If it isn't at all (none / 0) (#181)
    by jondee on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 02:10:29 PM EST
    a Repub v. Dem, Left v. Right issue, why is it that only ones obsessed with "leaks" and illegal leaks" around here recently are the right-leaning posters?

    And on the flip... (none / 0) (#185)
    by kdog on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 02:35:48 PM EST
    Obama was just as fired up to plug leaks as Trump is now...all partisans reek of hypocrisy on this.

    I tend to side with digging the leakage, I'll take whatever peaks behind any power curtains we can get, regardless of the person and their brand name in the big chair.


    This dreaded (gasp!) Deep State (none / 0) (#187)
    by jondee on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 02:46:14 PM EST
    situation currently developing seems more like checks and balances by other means..

    And it's near a dead certainty it wouldn't be occurring with an administration that had anything like the full confidence and trust of the intelligence community.

    We've already had one supposedly thoroughly-vetted National Security Advisor who can't even be trusted by his closest associates, and we still have an alt-right alkie sitting on the NSC who's been quoted as saying he wants to destroy the U.S government.

    Forget about "leaks", these people should be fitted with radio collars.


    "Whenas in silks my Julia goes, (none / 0) (#1)
    by jondee on Tue Feb 14, 2017 at 01:23:20 PM EST
    Then, then, methinks how sweetly flowes
    That liquefaction of her clothes.

    Next, when I cast mine eyes and see
    That brave vibration each way free,
    O how that glittering taketh me!"

    Robert Herrick

    Tennis commentator sues ESPN (none / 0) (#2)
    by McBain on Tue Feb 14, 2017 at 09:48:32 PM EST
    Doug Adler filed a lawsuit after he was fired by ESPN for an alleged racial slur during a Venus Williams match.

    Former tennis pro Doug Adler maintains he was describing Williams' aggressive style last month as "guerrilla'' tactics and not comparing her with a "gorilla.'' He apologized for his poor word choice but was let go from ESPN mid-tournament.

    The suit points out that "Guerrilla Tennis'' was the name of a Nike TV ad from the 1990s featuring Andre Agassi and Pete Sampras.

    Since his reputation, and therefore, earning potential has been greatly tarnished, I wonder if he has a good chance of winning?

    I remember you well... (none / 0) (#3)
    by desertswine on Tue Feb 14, 2017 at 11:13:08 PM EST
    from the Chelsea Hotel.

    A bit of Americana.

    Oklahoma hits 99 degrees... (none / 0) (#5)
    by desertswine on Wed Feb 15, 2017 at 01:52:58 AM EST
    in February.  Inhofe is having trouble finding snowballs. Rough times ahead.  

    I photographed miniature daffodils (none / 0) (#6)
    by Mr Natural on Wed Feb 15, 2017 at 10:50:45 AM EST
    stemming out of bulbs last week.  The same day one of the locally notorious climate change deniers cancelled the Michigan state pond hockey tournament for the second time in three years.  Too thin ice and too warm weather.

    What's that smell, Brick?  Schadenfreude, Big Daddy.


    Coldest recorded 2 months in Bozeman MT in history (none / 0) (#7)
    by Green26 on Wed Feb 15, 2017 at 11:35:47 AM EST
    Recorded history at the airport, that is. "In fact, it was the coldest December/January period across the Gallatin Valley since the brutal winter of 1978-1979. Most impressive was the 33-day stretch from Dec. 16 through Jan. 17 at the airport, where the average high was only 19, while lows averaged minus 6. Below-zero readings occurred on 23 of those days, and the mercury dipped to at least 10 below no fewer than 15 times.

    Perhaps that period 38 years ago deserves some further press. It stands as the coldest two-month period at the airport since records began in 1941, and the numbers are painful to read."



    And? (none / 0) (#8)
    by MKS on Wed Feb 15, 2017 at 12:36:56 PM EST
    Dontcha see? (none / 0) (#9)
    by jondee on Wed Feb 15, 2017 at 01:00:31 PM EST
    proves climate change ain't real.

    I bet you leftie tree-huggers didn't know it's freezing cold in Antarctica, either.

    These folks remind me of Michelle Bachman when she said that if evolution were true, we'd be able to see animals evolving before our eyes.


    Nothing like fudging to "prove" a claim. (1.00 / 1) (#195)
    by jimakaPPJ on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 04:39:33 PM EST
    But this time they got caught.

    The whistleblower is a man called Dr John Bates, who until last year was one of two NOAA `principal scientists' working on climate issues. And as he explained to the MoS, one key concern is the reliability of new data on sea temperatures issued in 2015 at the same time as the Pausebuster paper.

    It turns out that when NOAA compiled what is known as the `version 4' dataset, it took reliable readings from buoys but then `adjusted' them upwards - using readings from seawater intakes on ships that act as weather stations.

    They did this even though readings from the ships have long been known to be too hot.

    No one, to be clear, has `tampered' with the figures. But according to Bates, the way those figures were chosen exaggerated global warming.
    And without this new dataset there would have been no Pausebuster paper. If, as previous sea water evidence has shown, there really has been a pause in global warming, then it calls into question the received wisdom about its true scale.

    NOAA caught cheating


    It's just a fact (none / 0) (#10)
    by Green26 on Wed Feb 15, 2017 at 01:02:53 PM EST
    Doesn't prove anything, just like saying it's 99 degrees in the South now doesn't prove anything.

    Oklahoma isn't "the South" (5.00 / 1) (#14)
    by jondee on Wed Feb 15, 2017 at 01:09:00 PM EST
    have you ever been there in the winter time?

    Nobody is surprised about it being freezing cold in Bozeman; 99 in February in Oklahoma is startling.


    Why is that fact (none / 0) (#13)
    by MKS on Wed Feb 15, 2017 at 01:03:55 PM EST

    Ah, jondee, (none / 0) (#11)
    by MKS on Wed Feb 15, 2017 at 01:03:23 PM EST
    Green didn't and most likely won't say that.  He just left it hanging. Plausible deniability.  Or passive aggressive.  You name it.

    I know one thing (none / 0) (#16)
    by jondee on Wed Feb 15, 2017 at 02:19:20 PM EST
    I have a powerful sneaking suspicion this is going to be a very bad tornado season in Oklahoma.

    I hope I'm wrong.

    Trump had lunch with Christie (none / 0) (#20)
    by Green26 on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 07:49:34 AM EST
    Could it be? Chistie replaces Priebus. Interesting Yahoo article. I have no clue who the author is.

    Who knows (none / 0) (#24)
    by Ga6thDem on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 10:09:09 AM EST
    with these idiots. However there have been a lot of rumors stating that Trump and Bannon are going to make Preibus take the fall for all the disasters of the past few weeks. Apparently both of them think that Americans will swallow any stupid story they put out there.

    America's greatness on display... (none / 0) (#21)
    by kdog on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 08:46:57 AM EST
    last night up at The Cap...the living legend, tunesmith extraordinaire, John MotherF*ckin' Fogerty.  

    Captain America still got the goods...and despite the bad political moons on the rise, I have no doubt America will keep on chooglin'. Chooglin'. Chooglin'.

    Thanks Fogerty, for warming this heart, on this week of Valentines.

    You (none / 0) (#22)
    by FlJoe on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 09:04:07 AM EST
    get Fogarty I get Trump, he will be holding a rally lese then a mile down the road from me. I am seriously thinking of dusting off the bell bottoms and love beads(metaphorically speaking) and take the advice of another living legend and go down to the demonstration and vent my frustration, at my age I could certainly do without my fair share of abuse, but I will take the chance.

    Be safe Brother Joe... (none / 0) (#23)
    by kdog on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 09:40:13 AM EST
    if you do decide to go confront the baby fascists...the cops were no prize in the heyday of peace and love's resistance to violence and intolerance, but they are even worse now.  And have more state of the art weapons, lethal & non-lethal & quasi-lethal.  

    And sh*t, the Trumpers themselves may be worse than Coppers...as a contemporary tunesmith by the name of Ryan Bingham says, "be careful what you say if they ain't gonna listen anyway."


    Student suspended for posting anti Trump (none / 0) (#25)
    by McBain on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 10:30:03 AM EST
    Rant by professor.
    Caleb O'Neil, 19, said Wednesday he will appeal the punishment and plans to file a lawsuit if his appeal is rejected.

    O'Neil was suspended for a semester and a summer term at Orange Coast College and was told he must apologize to the instructor and write an essay "explaining why he shot the video," his attorney, Bill Becker, said.

    The article doesn't say if recording and posting videos of professors without their permission is against the law or school policy.  Anyone know?

    Caleb sounds like... (5.00 / 1) (#27)
    by kdog on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 10:51:13 AM EST
    an Orwellian Junior Spy.  Surely there is a place for him with Stephen "Creepy" Miller on Trump's propaganda squad.

    Suspension may be a bit harsh, but his momma shoulda taught him it's not cool to video/photo people without their knowledge and consent...and if she won't, somebody should.    

    And the prof should probably teach kids to think for themselves critically, and not go off on rants of their political opinions.

    "Nobody's right, when everybody's wrong..."


    Jimmy "The Weasel" O'Keefe wannabe (5.00 / 1) (#64)
    by jondee on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 03:06:00 PM EST
    he'll probably get immediate job offers from Project Veritas.

    It's illegal if (5.00 / 1) (#31)
    by Towanda on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 12:30:17 PM EST
    other students are shown, without their permission.  Otherwise, advice we get is that it's arguable--especially in state universities, with the argument that those are public spaces (at the same time, we're told that we can have nonstudents removed from classrooms; go figure) . . . unless expressly stated as not allowed.

    So, I solved it by always including a statement on my syllabi that taping (audio or video) of my classes was not allowed without my written permission.

    Would that I could have solved the issue of guns in my classroom with such a statement. . . .  


    If it is a state institution and the (1.00 / 1) (#197)
    by jimakaPPJ on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 04:45:06 PM EST
    paid his tutition then I don't see how you can keep h/she from taping/recording nor should you.

    Do the math (none / 0) (#26)
    by Repack Rider on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 10:41:55 AM EST
    The article doesn't say if recording and posting videos of professors without their permission is against the law or school policy.

    I think we can assume that it is, since there don't seem to be any other grounds.  Being the subject of a video made in a public place is one thing, it is another when it is shot on private property.

    I have always had to sign waivers when I appeared in videos.  This may also be a copyright violation.


    A legal guide for photographers (5.00 / 1) (#146)
    by Mr Natural on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 10:54:29 AM EST
    from a real attorney is Bert Krages, The Photographer's Right.

    You'll notice that many common assumptions are contradicted.

    A blog length article on the subject, The Ten Legal Commandments of Photography.

    I have no opinion.


    another good site in this same vein (none / 0) (#152)
    by Chuck0 on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 11:45:53 AM EST
    So you are supporting punishing whoever (none / 0) (#196)
    by jimakaPPJ on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 04:42:52 PM EST
    leaked the Flynn conversations?


    I would have never guessed.


    Headline Writing 101 (none / 0) (#28)
    by Mr Natural on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 10:56:10 AM EST
    I didn't know bulls... (none / 0) (#30)
    by kdog on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 11:02:02 AM EST
    could sh&t orange.

    NSA given broader powers by Obama (none / 0) (#32)
    by Green26 on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 01:00:20 PM EST
    This relates to the Flynn thread, which now seems to be full. I had said I would look for a prior NY Times article on this subject. Here it is. "N.S.A. Gets More Latitude to Share Intercepted Communications"

    "In its final days, the Obama administration has expanded the power of the National Security Agency to share globally intercepted personal communications with the government's 16 other intelligence agencies before applying privacy protections."


    This (none / 0) (#76)
    by TrevorBolder on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 04:09:33 PM EST
    Is what enabled the Flynn calls to be spread all over the intelligence community, prior to that it wouldn't have been.

    Black Panthers are EVERYWHERE!!!!! (none / 0) (#71)
    by vicndabx on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 03:59:18 PM EST
    {oblique reference to a past post by a TL regular}

    The number of extremist groups active in the United States rose for the second year in a row last year, propelled in part by the mainstreaming of far-right rhetoric by the Trump campaign, particularly on topics like immigration and Islam, according to the Southern Poverty Law Center, which tracks extremism in the United States.

    NYT Link

    Are you trying... (none / 0) (#83)
    by MileHi Hawkeye on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 04:46:17 PM EST
    to make him wet himself?!

    ....{a little}.... Seriously though, (none / 0) (#114)
    by vicndabx on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 08:15:33 PM EST
    just trying to share some facts, helps keep the conversations grounded.

    Tom Barrack on Tweety (none / 0) (#106)
    by MKS on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 06:56:43 PM EST
    So, I gave in and watched teevee today.

    Tom Barrack is on Tweety.  I know the guy, or know of him.  I litigated against his Colony Capital.   He is a smart guy--everything that Trump wished he were.   As to how he made his money?  Well, Google is your friend, is all I can say without getting Mama Bear's attention.

    WA court (none / 0) (#124)
    by linea on Thu Feb 16, 2017 at 09:17:29 PM EST
    rules against florist in gay wedding case.
    [Associated PressFebruary 16, 2017]

    "As Stutzman acknowledged at deposition, providing flowers for a wedding between Muslims would not necessarily constitute an endorsement of Islam, nor would providing flowers for an atheist couple endorse atheism," the opinion said.


    Well, I know the (none / 0) (#141)
    by Ga6thDem on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 09:00:13 AM EST
    GOP isn't going to do this but Bring on the special prosecutor

    For our email concern trolls (none / 0) (#142)
    by Ga6thDem on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 10:28:45 AM EST
    A Party to the Russian Connection

    By Evan McMullin. The GOP must appoint a special prosecutor to probe the Russian connections with Trump. The safety of the country depends on it.

    And (5.00 / 2) (#144)
    by FlJoe on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 10:40:07 AM EST
    just to think that our friend Trevor once supported this dirty hippie conspiracy theorist.

    Not THE Evan McMullin.. (5.00 / 1) (#160)
    by jondee on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 12:30:19 PM EST
    say it ain't so, Evan!

    Et tu, Brute?!

    He must be lurching left and eating too many big, fat, nothingburgers.


    Report: National Guard to Round Up Immigrants (none / 0) (#148)
    by Mr Natural on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 11:20:52 AM EST
    But see (none / 0) (#198)
    by Peter G on Fri Feb 17, 2017 at 04:46:14 PM EST
    this thread is now closed (none / 0) (#203)
    by Jeralyn on Sat Feb 18, 2017 at 11:49:07 AM EST
    we're at 200 comments.