Groundhog Day 2017

No surprise that Trump would appoint a far right, activist jurist like Neil Gorsuch.  The guy loves to legislate from the bench.  This is no surprise.  His mother was Anne Gorsuch.  Most remember her for her stint as head of the EPA during the Reagan administration.  She was so awful and gutted it so much that Reagan had to fire her because of contempt of Congress charges.

Prior to that she served as a representative in the Colorado House.  She was a member of the “House Crazies.”  This was the alt-right before the term had been coined.  She earned the nickname “the Ice Queen.”  She was the female Steve Bannon.  She married Bob Burford in 1983 while he was head of the Bureau of Land Management.  She’d met him when he was serving in the Colorado House.  Burford was a good-ol-boy rancher from Colorado’s western slope.  Putting a rancher in charge of the BLM was like putting a fox in charge of the hen house, due to all federal land they lease for grazing.  Even he couldn’t stand her and was in the process of divorcing her when he died.  The couple may be most remembered for when Burford got pulled over for driving drunk and Anne jumped out of the car and started screaming at the cop.  She was charged with public drunkenness.

Children learn from their parent’s actions.  Neil clearly learned from his mother.   It’s Groundhog Day.  Again.

 

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Kakistocracy

 

Many words have been said to describe this new regime.  Authoritarian.  Totalitarian.  Fascism.  An oligarchy.  A Fifth Columnist.  The Fourth Reich.  All are apropos.  Add to that a kakistocracy which means government by the least qualified or most unprincipled citizens.

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Martin Luther King Day 2017

It’s ironic that on  this MLK Day, with the departure of the first African-American president we are about to witness the inauguration of a man guilty of violating discrimination laws.  It’s been over 50 years since Dr. King gave his “I Have a Dream” speech.  While progress has been made, it’s clear we still have a long way to go.

 

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Make America Sick Again

The second thing the Republican house decided to do was to “repeal and replace” Obamacare.  They don’t have a clue what they’ll replace it with despite the fact that they’ve had eight years to work on it.  Democrats have co-opted Trump’s slogan to put attention on what repealing the Affordable Care Act would do.  The House has wasted countless votes to repeal the ACA because they didn’t want this president to enact any significant legislation, and the ACA is significant legislation.  It’s not clear why they want to repeal this act now as it’s clearly a success.  Do they not want to look like they were stupid all these years?  Is their irrational hatred of President Obama so great that they want revenge?  Whatever their reasons what does it say about their values that they are willing to kick 20 million people off healthcare to massage their egos?

The first thing they tried may answer that question.  The House voted to gut the independent ethnics office.  Now why would they want to do that other than they planned to be unethical.  Only after the optics became obvious did they pull it.

 

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Feliz Januca, Feliz Navidad y Feliz Ano Nuevo

 

Happy Holidays one and all.

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Rigged!

During the presidential campaign Trump constantly screamed to his crowds that the election was rigged.  The conventional wisdom was that he was saying this as he knew he was going to lose and needed an excuse.  But his was anything but a conventional campaign.  Turns out he may have known that it was rigged — in his favor.  Certainly the voter suppression had a lot to do with his wins in swing states.  But if claims about election rigging implies that he was complicit with the Russian hacking, electoral politics in America is in a very dark place.

 

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Carrier = Corporate Welfare

So the Donald has worked out a deal with Carrier not to move 2,000 jobs to Mexico.  With this deal only 1,000 jobs are leaving.  Not a good deal.  During the campaign Trump threatened to slap big tariffs on their products if they moved.  So what was the deal about.  State tax incentives.  Carrier is owned by United Technologies which gets 10% of their revenues from government contracts.  But that carrot wasn’t part of the deal.  So taxpayers are paying for this deal.   Not much of a deal.  More like extortion.  It also begs the question if the deal was based around state tax incentives, why didn’t Gov. Mike Pence make the deal months ago?

This isn’t manufacturing policy, which is what presidents are suppose to do.  This was something the Indiana state legislature is responsible for.

Bernie Sanders wrote an op-ed in today’s WaPo pointing out that this deal creates an opportunity for any company that threatens to move without tax incentives.  Not a smart deal.

This is what we have to look forward to for four years.  God help us all.

 

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