July 21, 2017

Friday Musical Interlude - The Slider

From 1972, the T Rex song The Slider from the album of the same name.

July 20, 2017

Mueller is fishing for Trump dirt

Special investigator is expanding the probe of the president into his business transactions - as far back as he feels like.  Now is the time for Attorney General Jeff Sessions to un-recuse himself and cancel the probe.  This is nothing more than free opposition research of the president for the 2020 presidential election at this point.

Democrats will try to justify it as trying to determine if there were motives for collusion.  Donald Trump was an international businessman. He's had dealings with Russians as well as multiple other nations.  This is not just a witch hunt, it's tinfoil hat conspiracy theory fodder and people will see what they want.


President Trump said yesterday that had he known Sessions was going to recuse himself he would not have appointed him as attorney general. That may be a signal to Sessions to consider a reversal of the recusal.

Perhaps I was a bit cynical

Earlier this week I was speculating that the GOP were deliberately dragging their feet on the Obamacare repeal and replace legislation. I was, and am under the impression that the steps to the edge of doing something by the Senate were window dressing and they never had any intention of doing anything.  So far, I have no disagreement with my earlier assessment.

However, I did speculate that senator John McCain's sudden need to be hospitalized was also window dressing.  Today it was announced he's been diagnosed with brain cancer.  Clearly I was wrong.

I'm not a fan of McCain's even though back in 2008 I thought he would make a better president than would Barack Obama. Despite my issues with his weak-kneed politics, I do appreciate his service in the defense of freedom as well as his service in the Senate.

I wish him and his family well and hope this is a manageable or treatable condition.

That said, it does open some questions about his senate duties and his seat. I'll leave that political discussion for later, although I'm sure Democrats are full of ideas already.


July 18, 2017

But Chuck Schumer is worse

Liar. Hypocrite. 
I'm mad at Republicans in the Senate for doing nothing on Obamacare (and tax reform, and tax cuts, and the wall etc.). I just discussed it. But for all of that, Chuck Schumer is worse.  The guy who refused to work with Republicans on the passing of Obamacare is now saying that he's willing to work with Republicans to fix it, and that going it alone by the Republicans (the same way Democrats did in passing this boondoggle) is misguided and not reasonable.

Hypocrite. 

Hypocrite.

Hypocrite.

Chuck Schumer should be invited to nothing that has to do with anything.  Shut him out of everything.  That's something all Republicans should agree upon. And if there is a Republican who doesn't agree with that approach - they don't belong in the party.

GOP, Strike TWO

Let's not understate the size of the GOP failure to repeal and replace Obamacare. It's huuuuuggge! No one GOP senator has decided they are willing to bite the bullet on their principals or their re-election chances and vote to enact some sort of go forward legislation.  As a party the failure lies with everyone in the GOP who is in the senate.  The party whip. Mitch McConnell. The individual senators who are hold outs.  Each individual senator who is not forcing the issue with the holdouts. The former presidential candidates who ran against president Trump and are presenting wish-list roadblocks.  

President Trump too.

The danger of failure is seismic - a possible disenfranchisement of Republican voters, as well as the new Trump voter coalition and independents, leading to a loss of the house and Senate.  If that is not enough of a fire alarm, if that does not get all hands on deck for a 24-7 push until something gets done, I'm not sure what will.   Strike three will be a full-on disaster.  Meanwhile Republicans seem to be trying to draw a walk (to further the baseball analogy) as the strikes fly past.  They seem to be more content to wait it out than to try to do something.

video

You were elected to lead, not wait for a bigger majority.  Make no mistake - 60 Republican senators would solve the problem of the holdouts and allow for a passage of something, anything.  But you WILL NOT EARN A SUPERMAJORITY by not doing anything. You have to accomplish something if you want to get voter confidence.

Maybe the GOP are trying to wait out Trump's presidency.  Maybe they just cannot come up with a palatable compromise. But the fact that the GOP is waiting, deliberately, is starting take hold - at least with me.  Stepping up to the edge, twice before retreating at the last second seems suspect. First a McCain illness looked like a chance to stall.  Then two last minute change of minds seemed to ensure the second senate failure. It's too much of a coincidence to stomach.

Regardless of the reason the GOP leadership is stalling, time is running short.  There are other things that need to get done - tax reform, tax cuts, a border wall. All of these things are urgent. My simple reminder to the GOP is this:

Do nothing, achieve nothing, become nothing.

Failure to act decisively will come back on you. Now is not the time for weakness or cowardice. To exhibit either will be to be revealed as a fraud. 






July 16, 2017

Hong Kong flummoxed by Kangaroo Court


If you are simply going to overrule election results that you don't like, why bother with the pretense of even having elections?  I'm looking at you communist China.  Hong Kong recently held local elections and the results were simply dismissed.
Activists accused Beijing of crippling Hong Kong's parliament Friday after four pro-democracy lawmakers were disqualified.

More than 1,000 people protested near the government offices Friday night in response to the decision.

The High Court judgement came as a massive blow for the democracy movement as it means the balance of power in the partially elected legislature swings further to the pro-China camp because opponents do not have enough seats to veto bills.

Former Umbrella Movement protest leader Nathan Law was among those barred in a case brought by the semi-autonomous city's Beijing-friendly government after the four changed their oaths of office to reflect frustrations with Chinese authorities.

Law was one of several rebel lawmakers to secure a foothold in parliament at citywide elections in September.

But that triumph was soon jeopardised [sic] after Beijing issued a special interpretation of Hong Kong's mini-constitution in November to insist oaths be taken in a "sincere and solemn" manner.
That's one way to run a kangaroo court; just be obvious about it.

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