Saturday, December 16, 2017

Tax Cut for the Wealthy to Increase Defiit by $1.4 Trillion

And Craven, Cowardly Corker to Vote for It

Early on in the so-called debate on the tax cut Sen. Bob Corker (R., Tn) said he would not vote for it if it increased the deficit.  Now the final bill is out and here are the numbers.

"The preliminary deficit estimate for the final version of the GOP tax bill says it would add $1.46 trillion to the budget deficit over the coming 10 years.
The true deficit cost is likely to be even higher if lawmakers extend the tax cuts for individuals before they expire at the end of 2025. This "sunset" gimmick is used to make the tax cuts more generous over the eight years they would be in force."

As for Sen. Corker, well his vote is yes, because he wants to make sure that everyone, and we do mean everyone knows that when a Republican says something you cannot take it to the bank because they are not bankable, they are bankrupt.  Corker is retiring, good riddance, and it is painful to say but maybe the Senate would be better if he was replaced by Roy Moore.  At least Moore says what he thinks, he doesn't try to hide his awful positions behind pious lies.

Friday, December 15, 2017

Think Republicans Won't Pass Their Tax Bill – Think Again

A Few Politicians Playing Silly Games

The news media is all atwitter over possible Republican defections from their tax bill. Sen. Corker of Tennessee is a no, and several other Senators are saying they need changes or they won't vote. But they are just playing for the press, in the end they will fall in line.

Susan Collins is a case in point. To get her vote the Senate Majority Leader promised her some help on preserving health care. But he is laughing out loud, knowing that his promise is worthless, that the House will not even vote on the things Collins wants. The question, is she so naive she doesn't understand this. Probably so, or she could just be looking for a face saving fig leaf to justify her vote.

Senator Rubio is just a big grandstander. He will get some type of minor concession to appease his ego. Other Senators will fall in line, and so a tax cut for the wealthiest, less health care for middle income families and an inflation generating deficit busting tax cut will become law. Soon.

Public Health Wins Major Victory Against Alcohol in the UK

Sorry Whiskey Industry, Massive Alcoholism is Not a Public Virtue

It is not secret and it is not character condemnation to notice that in many parts of the world alcohol addiction is a serious social problem. Governments struggle with the issue because a free society allows people to consume alcoholic beverages, but a compassionate society tries to limit the damage they do.

In Scotland one solution was to set a minimum price for alcohol in order to prevent cheap drinks from encouraging people to drink more than they should. The industry reacted as expected.

In 2012, the semiautonomous Scottish government passed legislation that set a minimum price for all alcoholic beverages of 50 pence a unit. The alcohol industry attacked the law as illegal and ineffective, saying it wouldn’t stem heavy drinking but instead force responsible drinkers to pay more. Executives have expressed concern that laws passed in the home of Scotch could set an international precedent that could unleash a wave of regulation and crimp profits.

Yes, people would pay more, that is the point. And yes whiskey companies might make less money, which if they had just shred of decency they would accept as a penance for producing a product that literally destroys people. So they challenged the law, and glory be, they lost.

In a blow to big alcohol, the U.K.’s Supreme Court has ruled that Scotland can set a floor on beverage prices—a landmark decision that could set a precedent for other countries.

With the ruling, Scotland will become the first country to implement a per unit floor price for alcohol, which is meant to curb heavy drinking by boosting the price of the cheapest alcoholic beverages.

This is a nice win for those who support using market forces rather than regulation to curb a social ill. And it looks like the concept may spread, and if just one person is spared the horror of alcoholism well it would have been worth it.

Paul Ryan May Leave Congress

Christmas Comes Early If True

Politico is reporting that House Speaker Paul Ryan may quit the Congress after this term. If so it would be a fantastic present to the nation.

Despite several landmark legislative wins this year, and a better-than-expected relationship with President Donald Trump, Ryan has made it known to some of his closest confidants that this will be his final term as speaker.

Ryan is the impetus behind one of the worst pieces of tax legislation ever, a law that when it is enacted will throw millions off of health insurance, raise health care costs for everyone, give the largest and most wealthy corporations a big tax reduction, give the people with the largest incomes a big tax break and generally screw up the economy.

He is a mean man. He wants to end the economic security for millions of Americans, gut Medicare, end Medicaid and cut Social Security. He has done nothing as Speaker except con the press into thinking he is smart. His leaving would be the only contribution he has ever or will ever make to the nationl

Thursday, December 14, 2017

When Did Jimmy Kimmel Become a Better Spokesperson Than Any Democrat

Don't Know, But We Appreciate It

The Moore Candidacy is Over, But Voters Must Continue to Learn From It

For some reason Alabama Senate candidate and credibly accused sexual predator Roy Moore has picked a fight with late night host Jimmy Kimmel. Kimmel of course is very articulate and he has a whole bunch of writers behind him. For Moore is was a shellacking he well deserved.

It doesn’t fit your stereotype, but I happen to be a Christian too. I made my first holy communion, I was confirmed, I pray, I support my church, one of my closest friends is a priest, I baptized my children. Christian is actually my middle name. I know that’s shocking, but it’s true. So if you’re open to, when we sit down, I will share with you what I learned at my church. At my church, forcing yourself on underaged girls is a no-no. Some even consider it to be a sin.” — JIMMY KIMMEL

Moore has made the mistake of calling out a man who is not cowed, not afraid, and unless Moore chickens out (like we know he will) Kimmel is willing to confront him.

Mr. Kimmel said he was spoiling for a fight with Mr. Moore.
Maybe when you say, ‘Come down to Alabama and we’ll do it man to man,’ maybe that means you’re challenging me to a fight, which is kind of what it sounds like. And if you are, I accept, by the way. I accept that invitation. There is no one I would love to fight more than you. I will put my Christian values aside, just for you and for that fight.” — JIMMY KIMMEL

Your move Roy, we expect it will be leaving town with your prehensile tail between your legs.

Kentucky Personifies Republican Attitudes Towards Elected Officials and Sexual Abuse

Deny, Deny, Deny and Don't Resign

[Update:  It is being reported that Johnson has taken his own life.  He continued to deny any wrong doing.

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- Kentucky State Rep. Dan Johnson, who was under investigation for alleged sexual molestation, died of a "probable suicide," the Bullitt County coroner said Wednesday night. 
Bullitt County Sheriff Donnie Tinnell said Johnson drove onto the bridge over the Salt River on Greenwell Ford Road in Mt. Washington, parked on the north side of it and shot himself in front of his car. His body was found on the bank of the river, just past the bridge.
Just before 5 p.m. Wednesday, Johnson posted the following message on his Facebook page:
The accusations from NPR are false GOD and only GOD knows the truth, nothing is the way they make it out to be. AMERICA will not survive this type of judge and jury fake news . Conservatives take a stand. I LOVE GOD and I LOVE MY WIFE, who is the best WIFE in the world,My Love Forever ! My Mom and Dad my FAMILY and all five of my kids and Nine grandchildren two in tummies and many more to come each of you or a total gift from GOD stay strong, REBECCA needs YOU . 9-11-2001 NYC/WTC, PTSD 24/7 16 years is a sickness that will take my life, I cannot handle it any longer. IT Has Won This Life . BUT HEAVEN IS MY HOME. “PLEASE LISTEN CLOSELY, Only Three things I ask of you to do,if you love me is (1)blame no person,Satan is the accuser, so blame the Devil himself. (2) Forgive and Love everyone especially yourself .(3)most importantly LOVE GOD. P.S. I LOVE MY FRIENDS YOU ARE FAMILY ! GOD LOVES ALL PEOPLE NO MATTER WHAT !

We will leave it up to readers to judge what to conclude about the charges against him.]

Democrats have decided that they will, reluctantly, try to get accused sexual predators out of elected offices. Republicans, like those in Kentucky, are taking a different tact. Here is what is alleged.

Kentucky lawmaker Dan Johnson is refusing to resign amid accusations he molested a member of his church when she was 17.
State leaders from both parties are calling for Johnson’s immediate resignation after the Kentucky Center for Investigative Reporting (KyCIR) published an expose Monday detailing allegations of how the Republican state representative — and self-proclaimed “Pope” of his Louisville church — woke his daughter’s friend during a sleepover in 2013 and forced himself on her, slipping his hands up her shirt and bra and putting his fingers in her vagina.
And here is the Republican's answer.

Johnson on Tuesday denied the accusations.
This allegation concerning this lady, this young girl, absolutely has no merit, these are unfounded accusations, totally,” he said, according to the Louisville Courier-Journal.
But the report on his actions is credible. Even to some Republican leaders although the Republican Governor is hiding behind his ignorance.

The KyCIR report highlights how Johnson — known in his church community as “Danny Ray Johnson” — painted a picture of himself over the years as a pro-gun, pro-life “patriot,” which helped propel him into the Kentucky legislature in 2016, when he won the House’s 49th District seat.  But the seven-month investigation, comprised of more than 100 interviews and thousands of pages of public records, alleges the Republican’s persona is orchestrated to mask a series of concerning incidents — including sexual abuse, arson and false testimony.
In the wake of the allegations, David Osborne, the acting Kentucky House speaker, called the report “compelling and deeply troubling,” according to the Associated Press. Gov. Matt Bevin (R) said he had not read the report and wanted to “wait until we get some facts” before commenting.

That this is not an isolated Republican incident is very troubling. But then the party of family values never really had any.

Other Kentucky House Republicans facing scandal in recent months remain in the state legislature. Former Kentucky House speaker Jeff Hoover, after admitting he paid to settle a sexual-harassment claim made by a woman in his office, resigned from his leadership position last month but is still a state representative. Three other lawmakers involved in the secretive settlement had their committee chairmanships taken away from them but also still serve as representatives.

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Michigan Republican Governor Will Keep Democrat Out of Congress for a Year

GOP Once Again Defeats Democracy

When Democratic House member John Conyers resigned due to extremely inappropriate behavior with women staffers his seat became empty.  So there needs to be a special election to fill it.  But that election will almost certainly send another Democrat to Congress.  So the Governor of Michigan, a man who cared so little about his constituents that he allowed the people of Flint to be poisoned by lead filled water has a strategy to keep the Dems from filling the seat.

From Taegan Goddard, who knows and publishes good stuff.

Political Wire

Conyers’ Seat Will Remain Vacant for 11 Months

Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder (R) said a special election to replace former Rep. John Conyers (D-MI) will be not be held until November 6, 2018

Actually that is no special election at all, it is the regular election.  As for the people in Conyers's district, well they probably didn't deserve representation anyway.  After all, they are not rich people from Bloomfield Hills.

Thoughts on Roy Moore's Loss

And This Forum's Erroneous Prediction of a Big Moore Win

All Predictions Wrong on Your Money Back

1.  Mitch McConnell won't seat Doug Jones until his tax bill is passed.  Having stolen a Supreme Court seat Mitch now wants to steal a Senate seat, at least temporarily.

2.  Before people get too excited about the Dems, remember about half the citizens of a state would vote for a sexual predator.

3.  When the Dems get out the vote, they win.

4.  The lack of heavy turnout in suburban areas for Moore shows that even if a lot of Republican voters cannot vote for a sexual predator they still cannot vote for a Democrat.

5.  Since Trumpie claims his election vindicates him about the accusatations of sexual misbehavior doesn't the loss of Moore convict him of sexual assault?

Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Today's Sick Joke in Health Care - Kellyanne Conway and Opiods

Major White House Denier in Charge of Denying Treatment and Prevention

The NYT editorial team has alerted us to a development lost in the news about sexual perversion in politics and entertainment.  It seems Trumpie has appointed his chief shill, Kellyanne to head up the opiod policy proposals and administration in the White House.

"Kellyanne Conway, counselor to President Trump, has no public health background, a reputation for bending the truth, and a knack for generating government ethics complaints. Yet Ms. Conway does have the ear of the president. She has also studied America’s opioid epidemic in recent months as part of her portfolio. She is not the “opioids czar,” as some news outlets reported this week, but her stepping out as point person on the government response to this public health crisis stirred hope of concrete action from a White House that so far has offered little more than talk."

Exactly what the basis is for the 'hope' is not clear.  Our hope is for Kellyanne to be consigned to the dustheap of history before she does more damage to the addicts on opioids who desperately need help not hype.

From Politico: Bernie makes moves pointing to 2020 run

No, Please No

Let's see. The nation is yearning for young, energetic center left Democrat to restore the Presidency to decency, honor and a place where the people who need help the most can get it. So what's the plan? It's this.

Bernie Sanders is taking steps to address longstanding political shortcomings that were exposed in 2016, ahead of another possible presidential bid in 2020.
From forging closer ties to the labor movement to shoring up his once-flimsy foreign policy credentials, the moves have provided the senator inroads into party power structures that largely shunned him in favor of Hillary Clinton last year. They've also empowered the progressive icon to harness his newfound political power and help Democrats fight President Donald Trump's administration.

The man is not even a Democrat. He is a self named Socialist. He is old and thin skinned and thinks he's entitled. Like Hilary, he may be the one person who can lose to Donald Trump.   

Monday, December 11, 2017

Jared Kushner – Are Your Worried Yet?

No – You Should Be

The news that former General Michael Flynn has turned on the Trumpies is bad news because Flynn has said he got his marching orders from some higher ups in the administration and transition team. Pure speculation is that this is Jared Kushner.

A Kushner indictment is not imminent only because of timing and the holidays. It may never happen. But Jared might need that sleep aid every night.

NYT Columnist Bret Stephens Tries (And Fails) to Justify Jerusalem Move

Stupid, Incoherent and Ignorant

This Forum has strongly criticized the apparently political move by Trumpie to move the U. S. embassy to Jerusalem and recognize it as the capital of Israel. The basis of the criticism is that there was no benefit, just all cost. So we were excited when a conservative, Bret Stephens, said he would tell us why this was justified. Turns out he did not say much.

Well first of all there is this.

Would Jews be allowed to visit Jewish sites, and would those sites be respected, if the city were redivided? Doubtful, considering Palestinian attacks on such sites, which is one of the reasons why it shouldn’t be.

Uh, Jews can for the last 40 years visit the holy sites in the city without recognition it is the capital by the U. S. So that argument is bogus.

The next argument is that any effort by Washington to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital would set the proverbial Arab street on fire and perhaps lead to another intifada.

But this misapprehends the nature of the street, which has typically been a propaganda tool of Arab leaders to channel domestic discontent and manipulate foreign opinion. 

Uh, yes. The Arab rebels who don't want peace can use the issue to rally the masses. That is why it was not a good idea to hand them this tool, which the tool did.

Finally there’s the view that recognition is like giving your college freshman a graduation gift: a premature reward for an Israeli government that hasn’t yet done what’s needed to make a Palestinian state possible.

But this also gets a few things wrong. It will have no effect on whether or how a Palestinian state comes into being, whatever the current histrionics in Ramallah. And it’s not much of a bargaining chip, since most Israelis couldn’t care less where the embassy is ultimately located.

So if most Israeli's don't care why do it? No answer from Stephens.

It belatedly aligns American words with deeds. It aligns word as well as deed with reality. And it aligns the United States with the country toward which we are constantly professing friendship even as we have spent seven decades stinting it of the most basic form of recognition.

Anybody understand that, anybody? Look the U. S. Congress gave the President the ability to defer moving the embassy because it recognized it might not be a good move to generate a peaceful solution in the Middle East. And Republican and Democratic Presidents and the State Department realized that was the case until an ignorant buffoon ignored reality and did something only to rally his political base. That Stephens cannot find a good rationale only reinforces the idiocy of the policy.

Saturday, December 9, 2017

Democrat Doug Jones Will Lose Badly in Alabama

And Here's Why

People who see an empty glass as half full continue to spout the fantasy that in the upcoming Alabama special election for the Senate Democrat Doug Jones is competitive. He is not.

  1. Alabama voters don't just vote Republican, they hate Democrats who they see as minorities, or in other words not  real Americans, you know, white and Christian.

  1. The African American voters are key, but they will not turn out. This is not a criticism of them, in Alabama they have been shut out of the governing process except for a few token offices. They get no value from sending a Democrat to Washington who can do nothing for them. If the race were for Governor they might see a benefit, but a temporary Democratic senator just does not help them at all. So why bother to vote.

  1. The idea that racism has been defeated by civil rights legislation and the election of Obama is just not true in Alabama.

  1. Doug Jones has no real charisma, he seems like a nice guy but not the type of person arouse passion.

  1. Jones has a lot of money, but it is largely useless. No one in Alabama is ignorant of what Roy Moore is so the TV ads don't have any impact.

  1. The Alabama Governor has said what everybody is thinking, in that she believes the women who accused Moore but doesn't care. That gives voters cover to also ignore the charges.

  1. The admission by one of the accusers that she wrote stuff on the yearbook page that Moore signed has impugned the entire claims of all of the accusers. She put in a date. Were we the only people who wondered by Moore signed a yearbook in December?

  1. On the plus side, a Democrat would not be expected to get 40% of the vote. If Jones gets the 43 to 45% of the vote  it will be a moral victory. Another name for a person who gets a moral victory, loser.

Another Great Result From 'Bring Your Guns to Church Day'

Man Shoots Self and Wife

A great illustration of why bringing guns to church to prevent massacres by crazy people with guns is  stupid is the case in Tennessee where a man in a gun safety meeting eshot himself and his wife.

The 81-year-old man put the magazine back into the gun and put the gun back in the holster, Parks said. Later, while people were cleaning up, a church member who had missed the demonstration asked to see the weapon.
Just as he was about to show it to the church member, the man accidentally pulled the trigger without realizing the gun was loaded.
A bullet fired across the palm of the 81-year-old’s hand and toward his 80-year-old wife, who was sitting in a wheelchair next to him. It ripped through her lower left abdomen, out the right side of her abdomen, into her right forearm and out the backside of her forearm. The bullet then struck the wall and ricocheted, landing under the wife’s wheelchair, Parks said.
Panic swept the church. Most people weren’t aware of the second demonstration and — having just discussed mass shootings — assumed an active gunman entered the church.
The first thought was of course that a deranged gunman had entered the church and this could have been a tragedy as a SWAT team might have shot everyone. But no other harm came and no crime has been alleged, stupidity with guns being so common that all NRA members would be arrested were that so. And the end seems good, the couple will recover. And here's the final footnote to the story.

The husband and wife’s conditions have been stabilized as of Thursday evening, Parks said. The couple’s family has asked their names not yet be released.

Yeah, we wouldn't want our names out there either.

Friday, December 8, 2017

Fox News Thinks Obama Should Be Arrested

The Crime? Criticizing Trumpie

As the U. S. descends into incoherence and madness the folks at Fox News are just becoming completely unglued. Now one of their toadies thinks former President Obama is acting in a criminal manner.

But a Fox Business commentator said Obama violated that unwritten rule with a recent comment about Trump’s tweets. What’s more, according to Fox Business host Lou Dobbs, that violation should merit arrest.
I think U.S. marshals should follow [Obama], and anytime he wants to go follow the president like he is and behave [like that],” Dobbs said on his show Friday. “I mean, this is just bad manners. It’s boorish and it’s absurd and he doesn’t realize how foolish he looks.”
I mean, he should be brought back by the marshals. Isn’t there some law that says presidents shouldn’t be attacking sitting presidents?”

Uh, actually Louie there is a law here, it's called the First Amendment and Freedom of Speech and it  applies in all democracies. One would think a person on TV would have heard of the Constitution, since that's the document that allows garbage like Fox on the air, but then the standards at Fox were never really that high.

This would be funny if it did not reflect the fact that the nation is falling slowly away from democratic norms and towards a place where a Republican is a god and the rest of us mere worshipers.   

Apple, With Billions in Profits, Billions in the Bank Could Get $47 Billion Benefit From Tax Bill

Anyone Still Think This is Not a Bill for Rich Corporations

To listen to Republicans go on TV and talk about how their tax bill is a middle class tax cut is to want the chance to laugh out loud. Now a report says that Apple, which is incredibly profitable and has billions of dollars in the bank will get a $47 billion benefit when the tax bill passes.

"Apple (AAPL, -0.26%) may see up to $47 billion removed from its tax bill if Republicans continue with their current tax reform plan, qualifying it as the biggest beneficiary of the legislation that’s currently working through Congress.
While details of the tax legislation reform are yet to be finalised, Senate and House have converged over the last few days over their treatment of the estimated $1.3 trillion of cash American companies hold offshore. The vast scale of the tax cut has been the focus of discussions, based on calculations by the Financial Times and tax experts.”
And this is from Republicans who could not even bring themselves to allow the child tax credit to go to families too poor to pay tax.  P. S.  Apple has about a quarter of a trillion in cash offshore.  They sure need a tax break don't they.

Thursday, December 7, 2017

Trump Names Himself Time's Man of the Year

And Other Snarky Comments on the News

  1. After Time magazine, a hoary relic from the past,  named a group as it's Person of the Year, Donnie went out and named himself Time's Man of the Year. Since Trump had already forged a Time cover several years ago falsely naming himself to the honor the Grabber in Chief said this was merely history repeating itself.

  1. Is there any person in public life looking more miserable than Melania? Well Ivanka would be but she is hiding out while waiting for her husband to get a richly deserved indictment.

  1. The great scandal at the Met is not the charges of sexual assault/abuse by its leader James Levine, but that the management of the Met and the community at large knew about it and did nothing.

  1. It is not true that the Trump organization which used to charge hotel operators to use the Trump name are now paying those same operators to keep the Trump name on their hotels.

  1. John Conyers is out. For the Dems it's one down and two to go, and maybe Sen. Franken will do the right thing and leave. That would leave one unknown Congressman from Nevada to end his career by stepping down.

  1. A Texas Republican Congressman say he will repay the $84,000 taxpayers shelled out in a settlement to a person alleging sexual abuse by the Congressman. He says he did nothing wrong, meaning that he agreed to the $84k payment because it wasn't coming out of his pocket, or because he really did do something wrong. Could be both. Probably both.

  1. It has not been confirmed that Trumpie's defense against what is likely to be money laundering/improper financial transactions involving Deutsche Bank is that “I am not smart enough to do that.” People close to Trumpie say that could be a winning argument before an impartial jury or even a Republican one.

  1. Is John Dowd the creepiest lawyer we have ever seen.

  1. Alabama Republicans believe that the media made up the charges against Roy Moore. There is no, zero, nada evidence to support this. When asked about that the Alabama Republican party did not say, “Evidence, we don't need no stinkin' evidence.”

It Took a Cretan Like Bannon to Produce Respect for Mitt Romney

Laughable If It Were Not of National Importance

The political operative and man who doesn't own a tie Steve Bannon criticized a Republican Presidential candidate for not serving in the military and for the fact that his sons did not serve. It is easy to think he was talking about Trumper who got a deferment based on a bone spur in his foot and Eric and Donnie Jr. whose only goal in life seems to have been to exploit their father's name. If the shoe fits etc.

But no, Bannon was talking about Mitt Romney, a man who had the temerity to suggest a person who is credibly charged with sexually assaulted teenage girls and now is lying about it should maybe not be the Republican candidate for the Senate. Bannon reached a new low, which was almost impossible given his past record.

"You hid behind your religion. You went to France to be a missionary while men were dying in Vietnam. Do not talk about honor and integrity," Bannon said.

Mitt Romney could be said to be the Utah version of John McCain. A man of some integrity and a man who brought universal health care to Massachusetts, Romney could have been a great leader. But he sold out to the conservative radicals in the GOP, and in his campaign for President he said he wanted to make life so miserable for undocumented residents that they would self deport. This was too much for even Mike Huckabee. Mitt also ran away from his major accomplishment, health care.

But Romney's devotion to his religion is not in question. There are ample examples of his generosity as an individual despite his mean and insensitive actions as a politician. That Bannon would attack a person for practicing their religion shows what Bannon really is. That he would be cheered by Alabama voters shows what they are.

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

Cost Benefit Analysis of Trumper's Jerusalem Decision

All Cost, No Benefit

The decision of an idiot President to recognize Jerusalem as Israel's capital is a simple one to criticize. A rational person looks at a decision and weighs the costs and benefits and takes the appropriate action based on whether or not the benefits exceed the cost.

No one, and we do mean no one, can list any benefit for the U. S. to name Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. It does not help the Jewish people, whose beliefs are part of the head and the heart, not a piece of land. It does not help anyone towards the solution of the Palestinian conflict. It does not help Trumpie politically since anyone fool who supports the decision already supports Trump.

The harm of course is to further distance the Arab world from trusting the U. S. to be a positive player in a settlement of the Mideast conflict. So no benefits and a provocation to Arab extremism. Nice going Donnie.

Leon Cooper, American Hero of Tarawa and Beyond Died

Celebrating the Best While Being Governed by the Worst in Both Parties

In World War II the Battle of Tarawa is largely forgotten. In part because it was a terrible battle that cost a horrible number of lives. The NYT obituary of a survivor Leon Cooper who just died explains.

There was no way to get out of the line of fire,” Mr. Cooper said in Return to Tarawa,” a documentary film about his battle experiences that was televised on the Military Channel in 2009. “Every goddamned angle was covered. We bumbled and stumbled into all this slaughter.”
The American forces took the island in 76 hours, but the toll was brutal: About 1,000 Marines died, and 2,296 were wounded. The New York Times wrote, “Riddled corpses form a ghastly fringe along the narrow white beaches where men of the Second Marine Division died for every foot of sand.”

Mr. Cooper lived a nice, successful life. But after the war, after going back this is what he saw and what he did.

In the 1990s he began to write books, all but one about war. While researching The War in the Pacific: A Retrospective” (2006), he learned that Red Beach on Betio, where he had delivered Marines, had become a dump, strewn with trash and in some places human excrement.
Garbage lay everywhere on what to me was hallowed ground, where I saw so many of my countrymen killed or wounded by Japanese,” he said in the Armchair General interview.
Revisiting his past kindled Mr. Cooper’s late-in-life activism, which suited his gregarious, blunt-spoken and profane personality.
Disgusted by the conditions on the beach, he began contacting members of Congress to authorize funding to clean it up, a campaign that has not yet succeeded.

That's right, a Congress obsessed only with tax cuts for the wealthy will not fund the clean up of a sacred battlefield, a place where real Americans, not politicians, gave their lives for freedom and protection of the nation.

So John McCain, as a military hero and one who says he reveres military sacrifice maybe you can stop being a Republican toady long enough to help here. Some Democrats at least used to be on board.

But Representative Henry Waxman, another California Democrat, was more sympathetic. In remarks in 2006 in the Congressional Record praising Mr. Cooper, Mr. Waxman said, “The sanctity of our battlefield, monuments and veterans’ institutions is of utmost importance to preserve military history and pay respect to those who fought.”

. . .

The broadcast led Representative Dan Lipinski, Democrat of Illinois, to draft language in the 2009 National Defense Authorization Act in the hope of persuading the Pentagon to make the return of Marines’ remains from Tarawa a higher priority.

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

Roy Moore Tied With Democrat Among Registered Voter – But Has Big Lead in Elections -

Huh – Oh, Democrats Won't Bother to Vote

So They Don't Deserve to Win

The Alabama Senate race should be an easy win for the Democrats even in the big red strate. The Republican candidate is reviled for being a serial sexual predator. Of course die hard religious folks don't care about that, but there are enough decent people in Alabama to make the race competitive. So it is no surprise the race is tied in the polls.

Except of course it is not.

The Senate contest looks to be highly dependent on turnout. Moore has a lead over Democrat Doug Jones, 49 percent to 43 percent, among the likely voters who are most apt to vote on Dec. 12. Among all registered voters, the contest is even.

Yep the Democratic supporters won't bother to vote, so if Roy Moore, the disgusting candidate who shops at Perverts 'R Us may end up in the Senate thanks to Dems who just don't give a damn. Yeah, all talk, no action.  The Democrats stayed home and that was why Trumpie was elected.  No he was not supported by a majority or even a plurality.  The winner in the 2016 electon, voting apathy.  The loser, America.

Nazi Uses First Amendment To Defend Lethal Threats Against Jewish Woman

Perverse Individual Perverts the Constitution

Freedom of speech is not absolute. This is well established, the Supreme Court has said that the First Amendment does not give a person to yell fire in a crowded theater. But a Nazi is claiming it does give permission to issue death threats to a Jewish woman in Montana.

Gersh, of Whitefish, Mont., sued Anglin in April in the U.S. District Court for the District of Montana. The complaint details many of the more than 700 anti-Semitic and hateful messages, including death threats, to Gersh, her family, friends and colleagues. A few examples of emails sent to her personal and work accounts:
Ratfaced criminals who play with fire tend to get thrown in the oven”
Merry Christmas, you Christ-killer”
Worthless f—– k—.”
It’s time for you to take a one way ticket to tel aviv.”
You have no idea what you are doing, six million are only the beginning.”
In one email, “Death to Tanya” was repeated more than 30 times, followed by: “This message came from ‘Satan Your King.’ ”

Now some of these are terribly offensive, but probably are not actionable. But the death threats are. Even rabid conservatives are probably repulsed by this. And the fact that conservatives are outraged shows just how bad this is.

So somehow the Nazi's have found an attorney who will claim Freedom of Speech to defend death threats.  Wow, 

Monday, December 4, 2017

Mitch McConnell Destroys the One Decent Thing He Has Done in 30 Years

Turns Tail and Runs to Roy Moore

When the allegations about the predatory activities of Republican Senate candidate Roy Moore surfaced the Republican leader of the Senate, Roy Moore (R, Ky) actually showed some character.  He publically stated that Moore was not fit to serve in the Senate, something so obvious that everyone was surprised a doofus like McConnell was aware of it.

Now that Moore is rising in the polls and might actually win McConnell is slinking away from his better self.

From Taegan Goddard's wonderful site.

Political Wire

McConnell Backs Off Opposition to Roy Moore

Asked if he believes Roy Moore (R) should be in the U.S. Senate under a cloud of child molestation allegations, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) told ABC News, “I’m going to let the people of Alabama make the call.”

James Comey Posts

Kinda Says It All

‪Beautiful Long Island Sound from Westport, CT. To paraphrase the Buddha — Three things cannot be long hidden: the sun; the moon; and the truth. ‬


“But let justice roll down like waters and righteousness like an ever-flowing stream” Amos 5:24

Dems Flame Out Even Worse on Face the Nation Than on Meet the Press

A Party That Does Not Deserve to Govern

Senator Diane Feinstein (D, Ca) is in her mid 80's. But instead of lving the dream retirement (she is rich) she is instead giving incoherent answers on Meet the Press. After moderator Chuck Todd tried to grill Senator Susan Collins(R, Me) on her turnaround on deficits (she believes tax cuts will reduce the national debt) Senator Feinstein was on. Befuddlement is the best that can be said about her answers.

But at least a Democrat made it out of bed and onto a Sunday talk show. On Face the Nation the guests were Senate Republican Majority Leader McConnell and a bunch of other Trumpie flunkies. The only opposition person to show up was an Independent, Senator Angus King from Maine. The Dems could not even be bother to state their policies. Of course this is probably because they have no policies other than wanted to remain the minority party so they can just coast along.

Finally on ABC Mitch was given loads of time to peddle flat out lies.  Chuck Schumer, the Dem leader, well don't know where he was, maybe havng breakfast with some of his Wall Street constituents.  The U.S. political system is described as a two party one, that would be nice if it were so.

Sunday, December 3, 2017

More Evidence of the Total Corruption of College Football

Like Nobody Knew

The NYT has a nice piece on SEC football which illustrates all that is wrong with it.

A two-year bowl ban for what the N.C.A.A. called a team’s “recurring culture of noncompliance” in recruiting.
An athletic director suspended eight months into his tenure after his fans effectively barred him from hiring a new head football coach.
A national championship-winning coach reportedly jumping into college football’s most competitive conference with a 10-year contract.

And what about that new coach at Tennessee Oh.

The news was capped Friday afternoon with the suspension of Tennessee’s athletic director, John Currie, who began the year in the comparatively calm setting of Manhattan, Kan., where he was Kansas State’s athletic director.
Currie’s reported sins were to have tried to hire Schiano, then failed to hire Oklahoma State Coach Mike Gundy, and finally to have tried to hire Washington State Coach Mike Leach, apparently without (or with? even the rumors conflicted) the consultation of the powerful Tennessee booster Jimmy Haslam. Haslam owns the Cleveland Browns and also has a brother who is Tennessee’s governor.

So why does a private citizen have any say over personnel at a state college: Oh, money. And speaking of money.

As if that were not enough, in Tallahassee, Fla., an intrepid reporter noticed a Christmas tree at the curb outside Florida State Coach Jimbo Fisher’s house. Since it was only early December, the disregarded evergreen appeared to prove true the suspicions that Fisher, who led the Seminoles of the Atlantic Coast Conference to the national title four seasons ago, had accepted an offer at Texas A&M, which joined the SEC five seasons ago. Subsequent reports have affirmed the news and specified that Fisher agreed to an impressive 10-year, $75 million contract, though neither university has announced it.

Now if those pesky students and faculty will just leave, think what a great university the SEC teams would have.

Saturday, December 2, 2017

Here: Read the Senate's Tax Bill

Just Because They Didn't Doesn't Mean You  Shouldn't

The Senate passed a tax bill that no member had read, no member understood and no member really cared about.  But there is a hilarious headline in the Washington Post, unintended humor of course.

Read the Senate tax bill released Friday

So here is the link so you can go through all the pages.  Will this make you smarter than your Republican senator?  Silly question.

Friday, December 1, 2017

Looking at Famed Conservative Anti-Tax Crusader Grover Norquist Shows Just How Wrong Conservatives Are

And How Unwilling They Are to Admit It

With the complete and utter failure of big tax cutting policy now demonstrated in Kansas by the fact that Republicans have repudiated the policy and voted to raise taxes, we thought it was time to take a look at what the leading anti-tax right wing kook Grover Norquist has said over the years.  Norquist is famous for creating the tax pledge he browbeats Reublicans into signing, a pledge that they will not ever raise taxes .  Here are some quotes from Brainy Quotes  that demonstrate his deep and profound ignorance.

People who say that there's a vote within the Republican Party that moves against immigrants is just factually not accurate.

Gosh, anyone want to dispute that?  Anybody?  Donnie you have the floor.

Obama has been perhaps the most partisan President since Truman. He hasn't learned to be civil -

He did not have to learn to be civil, he always was.  Now about the current Pres . . .

If you raise taxes, it won't reduce the deficit. The other team will simply spend the resources.

Clinton raised taxes, the economy soared, spending dropped as a percent of GDP and the budget was balanced.  Obama did almost the same, just did not quite get the budget balanced because he started in a much deeper hole.  Grover, don’tcha just hate it when history proves you wrong.

The question is: How do we reduce spending from 25% of GDP, which is where Obama put us? 

Actually spending was close to but not at 25% in the last fiscal year that GWB had control.  The Obama administration reduced that level to just above 20%.  Still waiting for praise from Grover.

If you're so committed to liberty that you see the Soviet Union as a threat, you're a Republican. If you're kind of indifferent to freedom and the level of the lack of freedom in the Soviet Union is just a question of extent and not really threatening to anybody, then you're a Democrat.

Okay, substitute Russia for Soviet Union and change interchange Republican and Democrat and now you have a correct statement.

Okay, everyone get the picture!