Sunday, November 3, 2019
Late getting into this, and beset by more problems than I can cope with
these days, so no introduction. Nothing fundamentally different. Just lots
more of the same old shit.
Some scattered links this week:
Medicare-for-all won't happen anytime soon, but Democrats should keep
talking about it. I've been wondering why we don't see more practical
half-measures advanced about health-care, as the debate between Medicare
for All and its opponents has basically devolved into a debate over whether
we can or cannot solve the most basic problem in the world's most expensive
(and relative to cost most inefficient and in many ways dysfunctional)
health care system. There were several such proposals early on, such as
adding a "public option" to ACA and/or allowing various constituencies
to buy into Medicare. But now that the race has boiled down to Sanders
and Warren vs. Biden and Buttigieg, the debate is between those who
understand the problem and are willing to present bold solutions vs.
those who deny that significant change is possible, who don't even
seem to understand the problem, and in any case won't put any serious
effort into changing anything. Which is say, health care has become a
proxy for the deeper division among Democrats: the rift between the
"radicals," who believe that government should serve the people, and
the "moderates," who believe that government should serve the donors,
preferably without most other people getting hurt too bad (at least
compared to Republican standards).
Contempt for human life: Starts with case in UK where the bodies of
39 Chinese nationals were found dead in a parked lorry container.
After ICE came to Morton, Mississippi: "About one in ten of the city's
residents was jailed or fired after raids at local chicken plants."
Alexia Fernández Campbell:
GOP leader has one chart showing why Republicans hate democracy.
Kevin McCarthy's tweet shows a county map of 2016 voting results, so
it heavily favors more rural, less populated counties. Head is: 63
million Americans put President Trump in office/ 231 Democrats are
trying to reverse the results." Top line ignores the fact that Hillary
Clinton got almost 3 million more votes than Trump, plus third party
candidates got another 2 million votes, so Trump's total share was
only 46.09% of the total. Second part ignores that impeachment would
not make Clinton or any other Democrat president (isn't that what
"reverse" means?). It would merely remove one spectacularly corrupt
and vile office holder, in accordance with the US Constitution.
Trump: The Soviet witch coup has found me innocent: Steve Scalise's
poster decrying "37 days of Soviet-style impeachment proceedings" shows
how little he knows about the Soviet Union -- also the US Constitution.
Also how little grasp he has of irony.
If Trump is impeached or defeated, conservatives will call it a 'coup'.
The White House's Godfather fantasy.
Stone's case underlines a principle that's long been clear: It is
impossible to understand the Trump administration's cast of characters,
their lingo, and their governing ethos without a working knowledge of
La Cosa Nostra and its Hollywood lore. If the Kennedy administration
created Camelot, the Trump presidency has built a kind of cultural
Trump has been booed at another major sporting event: Well, only
if you call "an Ultimate Fighting Championship event at Madison Square
Garden on Saturday night" a "major sporting event."
EPA to roll back rules to control toxic ash from coal plants.
Coal giant Murray Energy files for bankruptcy despite Trump's support.
How Trump's supporters distort Alexander Vindman's very American origin
In Iowa, only 5 percent of Biden supporters are younger than 45. That
compares to Warren (62%), Sanders (55%), and Buttigieg (30%); Biden
also trails: Yang (12%), Harris (8%), and Don't Know/Refused (6%). Under
"no big surprise," Yang has the highest M-F ratio (7%-1%), followed by
Gabbard (3%-1%) and Klobuchar (7%-3%), skipping those with 0% F (Delaney
2% M, O'Rourke and Messam 1% M). Harris is the only candidate with a
major F-M skew: 5%-1%. More surprising, Yang also has the highest ratio
of High School or Less to Bach/Postgrad Degree, 10%-2% -- again, skipping
0% denominators for Delaney (4%) and Messam (2%); Biden is 35%-26%, and
Sanders is 25%-24%. Most candidates do better with college graduates,
like Booker 0%-5%, Harris 2%-7%, Klobuchar 4%-13%, and Buttigieg 9%-40%,
but by far the most extreme is Warren 3%-59%. Those with electability
concerns should be especially concerned about Biden's age skew. Most
polls show young people breaking strongly for Democrats, but they're
also the age group least likely to vote, and it stands to reason that
many fewer will vote if the Democrats nominate Biden, especially
compared to Sanders or Warren.
Kentucky's Republican governor is facing a tough race -- and he wants
Trump to save him.
Jeff Hauser/Eleanor Eagan:
The impeachable offense that Democrats should stop ignoring: "A
constitutional violation worthy of an impeachment probe has been sitting
under Democrats' noses since Trump took office -- his efforts to undermine
The defeat of General Mattis: Review of Guy M Snodgrass: Holding
the Line: Inside Trump's Pentagon with Secretary Mattis, and Mattis'
own memoir (with Bing West): Call Sign Chaos: Learning to Lead.
Trump stumps for himself during a Mississippi rally for a tight governor's
The future of Brexit will be decided in December 12 elections.
Elizabeth Warren's plan to pay for Medicare-for-all, explained.
Let's group some more pieces on Warren's Medicare-for-all plan:
The 5 people who could have stopped Trump: "Gambling regulators once
contemplated yanking Trump's casino licenses. Why they didn't holds a
lesson for lawmakers today."
Tasteless 'Build the Wall' decor seen at White House kids' Halloween
'Republicans have become a cult run by crooks': "Former GOP congressional
staffer explains why the party 'has become a creepy mashup of grade B
totalitarianism' and 'Freudian manias.'"
Hope for humanity as Trump's base begins to leave him.
Denise Lu/Christopher Flavelle:
Rising seas will erase more cities by 2050, new research shows.
The most important part of the Democrats' impeachment resolution.
The most significant provision in the resolution exempts the Intelligence
Committee's impeachment hearings from a rule that ordinarily limits
questioning of witnesses to five minutes per committee member. Though the
resolution leaves the five-minute rule in place for most members, it allows
Intelligence Chair Adam Schiff to extend his own question time to as much
as 45 minutes, so long as he gives equal time to Republican ranking
committee member Devin Nunes.
These are important changes because they will allow Schiff and the team
of lawyers working for him to focus their time on the impeachment hearings
and to spend significant amounts of time asking probing questions during
those hearings. The new rules help ensure that the hearing will not be a
disjointed process, constantly jumping from one questioner to the next,
without giving anyone time to build a coherent narrative.
Inside MAGA Country's hottest club: The Trump-Pence 2020 Halloween Eve
Editing Donald Trump: "What I saw as the editor of The Art of the
Deal, the book that made the future President millions of dollars and
turned him into a national figure."
Why the impeachment fight is even scarier than you think: "Political
scientists have studied what our democracy is going through. It usually
doesn't end well."
Arrogance destroyed the World Trade Organisation. What replaces it will
be even worse.
The radical reform necessary to prepare California's power system for
the 21st century.
- Theodore Schleifer:
Silicon Valley billionaires keep getting richer no matter how much money
they give away.
Goodbye, Beto O'Rourke. What a sad end to a pointless campaign. Also:
Emmanuel Saez/Gabriel Zucman:
Make no mistake: Medicare for All would cut taxes for most Americans.
Michael D Shear, et al.:
How Trump reshaped the presidency in over 11,000 tweets.
This wave of global protest is being led by the children of the financial
An ad smeared a Kansas Democrat for sexual harassment. The main charge
actually described a Republican. Wichita's nominally non-partisan
mayoral race makes the national news.
Historian explains what binds Trump's extremely rich and economically
struggling supporters together:
What I struggle with understanding is how Trump, who is so self-evidently
incompetent, morally repulsive, and biased in favor of the rich, holds
onto his support among the white working-class and religious voters who
attend his rallies and cheer hysterically for their hero. . . . What binds
Trump's extremely rich and economically struggling supporters together are
their cynical beliefs about the motives of others. They think everyone
else is out to steal what is rightfully theirs.
Baghdadi story reveals divided -- and broken -- news media.
The White House's top Ukraine official confirms there was a quid pro quo:
"Tim Morrison tried not to make the president look bad. He failed."
Health care is on the ballot in state elections starting next week.
The double standard at play in Katie Hill's resignation: Compared to,
e.g., Duncan Hunter (R-CA). Also on Hill: