Showing posts with label Dirty Tricks. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Dirty Tricks. Show all posts

Sunday, April 15, 2018

Is MSNBC Becoming Conservative? The Supposedly Liberal Network Loves Anti-Trump Republicans More Than Leftists

Loading up on semi-repentant conservatives and ignoring the activist left, MSNBC is doing the nation a disservice.

Wednesday, March 28, 2018

Trump ends a temporary immigrant status for several thousand Liberians

By Michael D. Shear


WASHINGTON — resident Donald Trump said Tuesday that several thousand Liberians who have been living in the United States under a temporary immigrant status will have one year to return to their country or they will face deportation.

The resident said in a memo to the secretary of state that he was formally ending a program that has allowed Liberian immigrants to remain in the United States and work legally since 1999, when then-President Bill Clinton established it in response to conditions in the country after a civil war.

More than 800,000 Liberians were displaced by the war and fled the country. Some sought refuge in the United States.

The program, known as Deferred Enforced Departure, has been renewed for Liberians since, giving the immigrants the ability to remain in the United States without fear of deportation. But in the memo, Trump cited the improved conditions in Liberia as evidence that the program was no longer needed.

“Liberia is no longer experiencing armed conflict and has made significant progress in restoring stability and democratic governance,” Trump wrote. “Liberia has also concluded reconstruction from prior conflicts, which has contributed significantly to an environment that is able to handle adequately the return of its nationals.”

Advocates for Liberians in the United States had urged Trump to simply extend the protections.

Members of Congress from Minnesota, which has the largest Liberian population in the country, wrote a letter to Trump this month to echo those requests.

“Many of these people have been in our state for decades, and they are an important part of our communities, where they serve as business owners, teachers and health care workers,” the lawmakers wrote, asking for an extension of the program.

On Tuesday, Emira Woods, a Liberian-American advocate for immigrants, described the resident’s decision as a mixed bag. She noted the year that Liberians have before facing deportation, but said ending the program would force them to abandon lives in the United States. “Many of these Liberians had children in the United States,” she said.

The Deferred Enforced Departure program for Liberians was scheduled to expire Saturday. Though he declined to renew the program, Trump ordered what he called an “orderly transition” so that Liberians living in the United States could get their affairs in order before returning to Liberia. That period will extend for 12 months, Trump wrote.

The decision about the Liberian program mirrors the actions the Trump administration has taken toward other, larger groups of immigrants in the United States. Since taking office, the resident has ended temporary protected status for certain immigrants from El Salvador, Haiti, Nicaragua and Sudan, arguing that conditions have improved significantly in those countries.

Sunday, March 11, 2018

Former Assoc. Dir. of National Intelligence: "it was entirely possible votes were tampered with."


There has been extensive discussion of Russian efforts to hack into US voting systems (for example, see the report of the Director of National Intelligence from January of last year), and it is no longer in dispute that Russia was successful in ‘compromising’ a number of voting systems. Nor is it in dispute that many elements of our voting system (not just the voting machines themselves) are vulnerable to cyberattacks, and old-fashioned tampering, as explained in the excellent diary from yesterday by DKos contributor Leslie Sazillo, which highlights the work of Dr. Barbara Simons, an expert in computer security and voting systems.

For all the efforts Russia engaged in over the course of years to attempt to determine the outcome of the 2016 election, and install their preferred candidate, and all that is publicly known of their multifaceted operations to penetrate our voting systems, there are still many here and elsewhere who hold onto the contention there is no direct evidence that any votes, or vote totals, were changed.

That contention relies on the notion that Russia did everything in its capability to capture the election, from hijacking social media platforms to recruiting Americans to assist them, and they breached various voting systems in dozens of states, but the one the one thing they held back from doing, was change votes themselves (even though, as the work of Dr. Simons and other experts show, they could do so ‘invisibly’). Why would Putin hold back in this one instance, when he has shown no such restraint in any other way?

The answer is, in all likelihood: he didn’t hold back. Claims that votes were not changed to ensure the election of Putin’s tool, are looking less plausible by the day.

An article by Dr. Eric Haseltine (in, of all places, Psychology Today) from last month, explicates why this is the case.

First, who is Dr. Haseltine? From his website:
Eric joined the National Security Agency to run its Research Directorate. Three years later, he was promoted to associate of director of National Intelligence, where he oversaw all science and technology efforts within the United States Intelligence Community as well as fostering development innovative new technologies for countering cyber threats and terrorism. For his work on counter-terrorism technologies, he received the National Intelligence Distinguished Service Medal in 2007.
A little more background on him, from Wikipedia:
Haseltine spent 13 years at Hughes Aircraft, where he rose to the position of Director of Engineering. He then left for Walt Disney Imagineering in 1992, where he joined the research and development group, working on large-scale virtual-reality projects. In 1998, he was promoted to senior vice president responsible for all technology projects.[1] In 2000, he was made Executive Vice President. Haseltine was head of research and development for Walt Disney Imagineering[2] by the time he left in 2002 to join the National Security Agency as Director of Research. From 2005 to 2007, Haseltine was Associate Director for Science and Technology, Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI)—that organization's first—a position he described in a 2006 US News and World Report interview by stating: "You can think of me as the CTO [chief technology officer] of the intelligence community"…
Eric has 23 patents in optics, special effects and electronic media, and more than 150 publications in science and technical journals, the web, and Discover Magazine.
Seems reasonably qualified, and from his years at NSA, reasonably informed.
Here’s his take on tampering with vote totals:

HOW TO HACK AN ELECTION: AN INTELLIGENCE ANALYSIS.

After the last presidential election, I heard one expert after another reassure voters that the Russians could not have hacked voting machines or state vote tallying systems on a scale large enough to tip the presidential election…
As much as we’d all like to believe such confident pronouncements, my experience in the intelligence world, where I served as Associate Director of National Intelligence, has lead me to one inescapable conclusion—the optimistic “experts” are probably wrong, and all of us should acknowledge that our unconscious (or not-so-unconscious) need to believe that our democracy can’t be subverted by foreigners, blinds us to powerful evidence to the contrary. And, after embracing this scary possibility, we should do a lot more to secure our voting systems than we are doing now…
The case for Russian tampering with the vote
Let me start by explaining the way intelligence professionals would approach the question of whether the Russians, or other skilled actors, could change the outcome of a U.S. election by tampering with voting. Then I’ll show why intelligence-style analysis leads to uncomfortable conclusions.
In making assessments about a state actor, such as the Russians, intelligence analysts ask two questions: what are the intentions of this actor and what are their capabilities?…
So, do the Russians intend to elect American candidates they prefer over those that we, the voters, prefer?
In a word, yes. In a rare display of unanimity, last year the U.S. Intelligence Community assessed that Putin, acting through his intelligence services, had indeed tried to tip the presidential election. One of the Russian Intelligence’s scariest accomplishments was to break into voter databases in 21 states (up to 50 states if you believe some sources). This success alone could have influenced the election by dictating who could and could not vote. In one target of Russian hacking, North Carolina for instance, some legitimate voters (in a “blue” precinct, as it turns out,) could not vote because the e-poll registration system used to allow voters to vote erroneously asserted that some legitimate voters weren’t registered…
One more thing. You might be wondering whether, despite their motivation to subvert our national elections, Russian leadership might still hesitate to alter vote tallies out of fear of getting caught. Whereas the U.S. Congress responded to voter registration hacks and email leaks from the Clinton campaign with sanctions—a mere slap on the wrist—the U.S. just might view outright alteration of vote counts an act of war and respond accordingly.
Sadly, I think the Kremlin views getting caught as more of a good thing, than a bad thing, because the net result would be favorable to Russia. Based on the way we responded to Russian behavior in 2016, Putin knows that a sizable portion of America—members of whichever major party the Kremlin favored—would, by and large, accept the inevitable Russian denials about vote tampering because we all believe what we want to believe, particularly when believing Russia committed an act of war could lead to armed conflict with a superpower…
In other words, if Russia were caught changing vote counts, America would be even more divided than today: exactly what the Kremlin wants. And the national will to respond to Russia’s provocation as an act of war simply wouldn’t be there.
Russia wins if they don’t get caught and Russia wins if they do get caught; what’s not to like? (emphasis added)
Note that Dr. Haseltine makes reference to information that, rather than the 39 states we know were in some way compromised, it may be the voting systems in all 50 states the Russians accessed.

Dr. Haseltine goes into detail about the vulnerabilities of voting systems, covering much of the same territory as Leslie’s review of Dr. Simon’s work, so I won’t go through it here, but Dr. Haseltine’s summary is well worth the read.

For our discussion, it’s his ultimate conclusion that warrants attention:
Adding up what we know about Russian intentions and capabilities, and factoring in the vulnerabilities just listed, I believe that it was entirely possible votes in the 2016 election were tampered with, and that attempts could be made to compromise future elections.
Why hold onto the notion that Russia didn’t try to change votes? (And if they tried, there’s no reason to think they wouldn’t be ‘invisibly’ successful.)

Dr. Haseltine suggests it is simply not wanting to believe it to be true: “the optimistic “experts” are probably wrong, and all of us should acknowledge that our unconscious (or not-so-unconscious) need to believe that our democracy can’t be subverted by foreigners”.
Charles Pierce, at Esquire, echoes this view:
The last outpost of moderate opinion on the subject of the Russian ratfucking during the 2016 presidential election seems to be that, yes, there was mischief done and steps should be taken both to reveal its extent and to prevent it from happening again in the future, but that the ratfucking, thank baby Jesus, did not materially affect the vote totals anywhere in the country. This is a calm, measured, evidence-based judgment. It is also a kind of prayer. If the Russian cyber-assault managed to change the vote totals anywhere, then the 2016 presidential election is wholly illegitimate. That rocks too many comfort zones in too many places.
Putin isn’t playing.

Saturday, Mar 10, 2018 · 8:21:45 AM EST · ian douglas rushlau
DKos member Hudson Valley Mark in a comment stressed the importance of communicating clear policy goals to address the vulnerabilities of our voting systems, and his point is well-taken.

The Verified Voting Foundation has created principles for making voting as secure as possible, which are as follows:
Any new voting system should conform to the following principles:
1. It should use human-readable marks on paper as the official record of voter preferences and as the official medium to store votes.1
2. It should be usable by all voters; accessible to all voters, including those with disabilities; and available in all mandated languages.2
3. It should provide voters the means and opportunity to verify that the human-readable marks correctly represent their intended selections, before casting the ballot.3
4. It should preserve vote anonymity: it should not be possible to link any voter to his or her selections, when the system is used appropriately. It should be difficult or impossible to compromise or waive voter anonymity accidentally or deliberately.4 No voter should be able to prove how he or she voted.5
5. It should export contest results in a standard, open, machine-readable format.6
6. It should be easily and transparently auditable at the ballot level. It should:
export a cast vote record (CVR) for every ballot,
in a standard, open, machine-readable format,
in a way that the original paper ballot corresponding to any CVR can be quickly and unambiguously identified, andvice versa.7
7. It should use commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) hardware components and open-source software (OSS) in preference to proprietary hardware and proprietary software, especially when doing so will reduce costs, facilitate maintenance and customization, facilitate replacing failed or obsolete equipment, improve security or reliability, or facilitate adopting technological improvements quickly and affordably.8
8. It should be able to create CVRs from ballots designed for currently deployed systems9 and it should be readily configurable to create CVRs for new ballot designs.10
9. It should be sufficiently open11 to allow a competitive market for support, including configuration, maintenance, integration, and customization.
10.It should be usable by election officials: they should be able to configure, operate, and maintain the system, create ballots, tabulate votes, and audit the accuracy of the results without relying on external expertise or labor, even in small jurisdictions with limited staff.

Friday, March 9, 2018

Here's what will happen if Trump meets Kim Jong Un

1. Kim will flatter him.


2. Kim will impress him with his palaces and his military parades.


3. Kim will tell him what a historical achievement this diplomatic contact is. And Trump is the one who did it!


4. Kim will agree to take first steps that might eventually lead to denuclearization in the far, far future. In exchange for aid right now.


5. Kim will again tell him what a big win this meeting is.


6. Trump will leave and tout this as a victory.


7. Kim will do as little as possible to fulfill his side of any agreement and wait for Trump to leave office.


8. Once Trump is out of office, Kim sends North Korea back into isolation.

Source

Friday, February 2, 2018

Trump authorizes release of controversial Republican memo

Donald Trump has authorized the release of a controversial Republican memo, and has sent word to the House Intelligence Committee the document may be made public, a White House official said.

www.cnn.com/2018/02/02/politics/republican-intelligence-memo/index.html

Tuesday, January 30, 2018

Why $1,000 One Time Bonuses Are Part Of The Tax Scam

By louis c

Let me give you a little background of what I've done for the past 22 years as work. I represent a union in the Greater Boston area and part of my responsibilities is to negotiate contracts with the employer on behalf of the union employees. The people I represent are mostly in the maintenance departments of schools, hospitals, pharmaceutical companies, museums and sports' facilities.

The pay ranges from a low of about $26 per hour for unlicensed employees, to a high of $40 an hour for licensed personnel (electricians, plumbers, HVAC). So. let's just put the average at about $33 an hour for the sake of this argument.

A $1,000 bonus is not a pay raise. It represents less than fifty cents ($.50) an hour for the year. 40 hours a week x 52 weeks = 2080 x 50 cents is $1,040.

The one time bonus, instead of a 50 cent raise means the bonus is only for one year. A fifty cent raise is every year, as your salary has increased. On top of that, overtime is now calculated at the higher rate of pay, compounding the increase when you work the overtime.

I have generally been getting 2 and a half to 3 percent raises, per year, for 3 year contracts. This means we are getting 75 cents to a dollar increase each year, for each hour worked.

If I had to go into a ratification meeting on a three year contract with a $1,000 bonus and no raises for 3 years, they'd kill me, let alone not ratify the Tentative Agreement (TA).

When we enter the negotiations, we are often offered a bonus from the other side, for opener. A bonus doesn't increase the salary and dies after it is paid, as a salary increase lives on to the employee (and all the employees to follow) forever.

These well publicized one time bonuses should be seen for exactly what they are, part of the overall scam being perpetrated on the middle class workers of this country.

Sunday, January 28, 2018

New York Attorney General To Investigate Firm That Sells Fake Followers

The New York attorney general, Eric T. Schneiderman, on Saturday opened an investigation into a company that sold millions of fake followers on social media platforms, some of them copying real users’ personal information.

The company, Devumi, and its sale of automated followers to a swath of celebrities, sports stars, journalists and politicians, was detailed in a New York Times article published earlier on Saturday. 

While based in Florida, Devumi claims on its website to be based in New York City.

At least 55,000 of its “bot” accounts used names, pictures, hometowns and other details taken from people on Twitter. The real users hailed from every U.S. state, including New York, and dozens of countries, a Times analysis found.

“Impersonation and deception are illegal under New York law,” Mr. Schneiderman wrote on Twitter. “We’re opening an investigation into Devumi and its apparent sale of bots using stolen identities.”
Eric T. Schneiderman, the attorney general of New York. Credit Sasha Maslov for The New York Times
The investigation is the latest in a series of federal and state inquiries into the commercial and political abuse of fake accounts on social media. Tens of millions of fake accounts have been deployed to defraud businesses, influence political debates online and attract customers.

Social media companies, including Twitter and Facebook, have drawn intense scrutiny for not taking greater steps to weed them out. Many of the accounts identified by The Times appear to violate Twitter’s own policies, but remained active on the social media platform for years, each retweeting and promoting Devumi customers.

“The tactics used by Devumi on our platform and others as described by today’s NYT article violate our policies and are unacceptable to us,” Twitter said in a message posted on its media relations account on Saturday.

Mr. Schneiderman, who was first elected in 2010, has brought a series of cases focused on the emerging world of online fraud, impersonation and abuse. In December, he began an investigation into how the Federal Communications Commission was flooded with millions of fake comments on a proposal to scrap so-called net neutrality rules. Many of the comments used names and addresses borrowed from real people, almost always without their knowledge.

“The internet should be one of the greatest tools for democracy — but it’s increasingly being turned into an opaque, pay-to-play playground,” Mr. Schneiderman said.

Wednesday, January 24, 2018

Hackers putting malware in pirated copies of 'Fire and Fury'



JUPITER, FL - MARCH 08:  Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump holds up his book after holding a press conference at the Trump National Golf Club Jupiter on March 8, 2016 in Jupiter, Florida.  Trump is projected to win the Republican Presidential primaries in Mississippi and Michigan. (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)
Michael Woff’s book Fire and Fury has attracted tons of attention for anyone even vaguely curious about life inside the Trump White House and copies have been flying off the shelves. Wikileaks posted a PDF copy of the book and pirated copies quickly began making the rounds. Unsurprisingly, hackers jumped on the opportunity to do some misdeeds. Cybersecurity firm employee Michael Molsner tweeted the discovery.
The Daily Beast did a little digging into malware, which is in a PDF file with almost 100 pages cut from the full 328 page version.
The Daily Beast obtained a sample of the malware, and processed it through an online analysis service, which marked the files as a so-called backdoor. A backdoor may give hackers remote access to a victim’s computer.
It’s not the most exciting or underground malware in the world: A slew of antivirus programs detect the malicious program, according to results from malware analysis site Virus Total.
So it isn’t the most devastating cyber attack, but it’s important to get your materials from authorized sources. Hackers aren’t above capitalizing on nonfiction political bestsellers to gain access to your computer.

Tuesday, January 23, 2018

McConnell is so full of shit that he should be declared a hazardous waste site

Posted by Rude One

Not for one single second should anyone trust Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell on his vaguely-worded fake promise to bring up a bill for the undocumented immigrants brought to the U.S. as children. You know, the Dreamers. McConnell is so full of shit that he should be declared a hazardous waste site, but people keep wanting to build houses on that toxic bit of Senate real estate.

Democrats caved after making multiple offers for ways to reopen the federal government that would either force action on the DREAM Act or contain protection for those recipients of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals. They even offered to fund the stupid fucking wall. It went nowhere.

To be fair, the bill to reopen the government until February 8 does contain six years of funding for the Children's Health Insurance Program, which takes that off the table on the upcoming negotiations.

And, to be fair, the shutdown has brought even more attention to the plight of the Dreamers, whose path to citizenship is supported by a huge majority of Americans, and the fact that their fate is in the hands of the callous GOP and their mad leader, Donald Trump. When the Republicans fail to do shit, and they will fail to do shit, it will (hopefully) be as clear as can be who broke their word when the government shuts down again. But we have reached the limit of trust in the political process.

At this year's Women's March, I saw many more signs about immigrants compared to last year. Hell, we even chanted pro-immigration slogans in New York City. But I've started wondering at what point is marching not enough of a statement, that the argument is not being made strongly and forcefully.

Anyone with a fucking ounce of heart was sickened by the sight of Jorge Garcia, saying goodbye to his wife and children in Michigan before being deported to Mexico, a country that he left 30 years ago, when he was ten. Garcia is, for all intents and purposes, American. He is married to an American woman. He has American children. Jesus fuck, can't we have some kind of squatters' rights to at least be left the fuck alone?

And maybe you were outraged at the idea of U.S. Customs and Border Patrol officers being able to walk onto a Greyhound bus in Florida and ask people for proof of citizenship. It's a "show me your papers" scenario right out of every anti-Nazi or anti-Soviet Union movie or book. They removed a woman from the bus and her family hasn't heard from her since. Sure, there may be some legitimate reason for the CBP's actions towards the woman. But if they really are routinely asking for your i.d., that's some 4th Amendment-violating shit right there.

And then maybe you can stomach watching this BBC report on Pacific County, Washington, which went for Trump by 7 points. The area has seen kids pulled out of schools to be with their deported parents, industries running low on workers, and general shock that, holy shit, "deportation" isn't just for undocumented murderers (of which there are precious few, despite the GOP's best efforts to scare you into thinking otherwise).

I keep wondering when is there going to be a breaking point. When is there going to be a point where the citizens of a town or city simply form a human wall against the Immigration and Customs Enforcement officers who have been showing up in hospitals and courthouses and other previously "safe" places? When will real resistance, peaceful, nonviolent, but decidedly not just about your tweets or your government-sanctioned march, come to be? When will people say that enough is enough, get themselves arrested, and all flood the judicial system so that it grinds to a halt (from the dying snail's pace it's on)?

In New Fairfield, Connecticut, another man with an American wife and two American children, Joel Colindr├ęs, who escaped violence in Guatemala 14 years ago to come to the United States, was ordered to leave the country. He is currently appealing this decision, and several dozen people came out in this town north of Danbury to protest his possible deportation. What if agents come to take him away and some of those protesters decide that they will not allow it to happen? That is the wall that's needed, the humane, caring, righteous wall to halt the excesses of a government gone as crazy as its leader in tearing apart families, that is harming our citizens, especially the children of the deported.

This will be part  of the next phase of resistance. It will happen. Perhaps with Colindr├ęs, perhaps with Lukasz Niec. Niec is the doctor in Michigan (the fuck is up with ICE agents in Michigan?) who was brought to the United States from Poland in 1979, when he was 5 years old. He received permanent resident status in 1989. But because he had a couple of low-level misdemeanor convictions from when he was a teenager, he is subject to deportation. He's a fucking doctor. He can't speak Polish. He's not even undocumented. Hell, I left Queens when I was 4, and I wouldn't know what the fuck to do if I were sent back there, let alone a completely foreign country.

It's fucking gut check time. We are into "First they came for" territory. We've gone from the undocumented immigrants to the Dreamers to legal residents. When will we speak out? When will we act? Or will we once again wait until it is us?

The government is operating against what a majority of the nation believes, and it is harming communities, as well as families, hurting the nation in the pursuit of a blatantly nationalistic and, frankly, anti-American goal. It is long, long past the time for a new non-violent resistance movement to protect the soul of the country. And if you believe that soul is white, you can fuck off to some fantasy place and wallow in hate and ignorance.

Thursday, January 18, 2018

HYPOCRITES!!! Family Values Republicans Silent As Donald Trump Pays Porn Stars Hush Money

In this ‘Dollemore Daily’, Jesse addresses the reporting surrounding the $130,000 payment that was allegedly paid to porn actress Stephanie Clifford (Stormy Daniels), by Donald Trump, in an effort to keep her silent about their 2006 affair.

Saturday, January 13, 2018

@TomiLahren and @JesseBWatters Defend Donald Trump's 'SHlTHOLE' Remark

In this ‘Dollemore Daily’, Jesse addresses the problematic comments made by Donald Trump related to immigration from countries with populations comprised predominantly of people of color rather than from Norway and other white countries, and the twisting and turning done by some Republicans to defend and come to his aid.




Saturday, January 6, 2018

Puerto Rico Is Suffering For Our Sins

Posted by Rude One

Before we forget about it completely in the fog of Michael Wolff's book about the fog that Donald Trump apparently exists in, let's pause to recognize that, post-Hurricane Maria, Puerto Rico is still fucked and it won't be unfucked for a long time. How can we list the ways?

- It might be May before the entire island has power. Half the people on the island, including those in some urban areas, do not have electricity. And while the Army Corps of Engineers thinks that power will be restored to 95% of Puerto Rico by March, we're still talking Americans living without power for 6 months since the storm, and, in the more remote areas, 8-9 months, just in time for the 2018 hurricane season to start. (Those areas still have over 80,000 people in them.)

- Some of those remote areas still don't have potable water. FEMA has been insisting that 95% of Puerto Ricans have access to drinkable water, but the island's water was a fucking mess before the storm. Yeah, pre-Maria, 99.5% of the island's citizens drank water that violated the Safe Drinking Water Act. And after the storm, with water treatment plants needing, you know, electricity, even if you get your water from your kitchen sink, it still was contaminated with bacteria, as seen by an uptick in illnesses caused by those little fuckers.

- Connecticut's two senators, Chris Murphy and Richard Blumenthal, both Democrats, returned this week from a visit to the island. Murphy, in particular, was stunned by what he saw. He said that "'almost none' of the aid Puerto Rico was supposed to receive has been delivered as part of a $36.5 billion October package that also allocated relief for Florida and Texas." And Murphy believes that the final death toll from the failure of the federal government to send the aid needed will be "in the multiple thousands."

- Speaking of the death toll, it's already estimated to be over 1000, when you take into account things like the people who died because the power grid was destroyed and they couldn't get dialysis. Don't take my word for it. Listen to the demographer who helped come up with that number. Alexis R. Santos-Lozada believes that the lower number of 64 directly attributable to the hurricane in action will remain the official death count. She warns, "[M]inimized figures could weaken efforts to provide relief to communities affected by the hurricane at the local and international level." The governor of Puerto Rico, Ricardo Rossell├│, just launched an effort to look into the actual number of deaths.

- While it looks like the issue might be shortly fixed, Puerto Rico is a primary place where IV bags and saline fluid are made, and so there has been a shortage of those in hospitals on the mainland. Amazing how this shit works. The FDA is saying that the manufacturing plant is back on the commercial grid, but, holy shitballs, did you even know this was happening?

- Meanwhile, there has been an exodus of Puerto Ricans to the mainland United States, which they can do freely and legally (sorry, Trumpenheimers) because they are Americans. Hundreds of thousands of them have come to settle here. At least 200,000 are now living in Florida, which Trump won by 113,000 votes in 2016. Anecdotally, many of those new residents are registering to vote. PR Gov. Rossell├│ is saying he will work to mobilize the millions of Puerto Ricans in the states to take revenge on Republicans in 2018.

And that, in the end, will be the only way to unfuck a part of the United States that our madman resident wants us to forget about.

Saturday, December 16, 2017

Republican Congressman Who Mocked Sick People As Immoral Announces He Has Cancer

Republican Congressman Mo Brooks from Alabama recently announced on the House floor that he has been diagnosed with prostate cancer, and was greeted with the utmost sympathy from his fellow members of Congress.

But just a few months ago, this same man said during an interview with CNN that people who lead good lives don’t get sick because they do everything right.

He also wants to deny millions of Americans the same healthcare benefits that he receives.

His diagnosis is sad for him and his family, but his actions as a Congressman are absolutely disgusting. Ring of Fire’s Farron Cousins discusses this.



Friday, December 15, 2017

The Republicans Are What We Thought They Were

First, they pass tax cuts and run up the deficit. Then, they use the deficit to ‘prove’ spending is out of control, and start slashing entitlement programs.



You’re surprised at Bob Corker? Really? Please. Yes, he’s a deficit hawk. And he’s a senator who has, from time to time, made some effort to work in a bipartisan fashion.

But come on. He’s a Republican. He likes tax cuts. He believes, as they all do, in supply-side economic theory. And he has donors and constituents in Tennessee who wanted this. See what he said in defending his switch from no to yes on the GOP tax bill: He changed because of “many conversations over the past several days with individuals from both sides of the aisle across Tennessee and around the country.” In other words, rich people.

Besides, he’s not going to buck the team. Not on something like this. There’s a history here. Read Robert Kaiser’s great book Act of Congress, about how the Dodd-Frank bill became law. Corker was working with Chris Dodd. In absolute good faith! But Corker couldn’t—or wouldn’t—bring any other GOP senators along with him. A crucial defection, incidentally, was Richard Shelby, whom we’re praising this week for helping to save us from Sen. Roy Moore. Corker ultimately voted against it.

Marco Rubio? That was a joke from the start. He seems to have gotten a portion of what he wanted on the child tax credit. Rubio called the changed that leadership agreed to a “solid step.” We all know what words like that mean. They mean: Well, it kinda sucks, but it’s enough for me to save face, especially with Americans for Tax Reform and Club for Growth and all these other people threatening to find someone to primary my ass if I vote no.

Like the coach said, the Republicans are who we thought they were. So it’s done. Or is going to be.

As I wrote in The New York Times Friday, it’s the second most unpopular piece of major domestic legislation of the last 27 years. The first most unpopular? The attempt to repeal Obamacare earlier this year. Nice work, 115th Congress!

You think this is bad, think about what’s next. What’s next are cuts to Medicaid, Medicare, Social Security, and other domestic spending programs. Because this is the Republican formula:



1. Pass massive tax cuts for the top 1 percent.


2. Run up the deficit.

3. A year or two later go, “Oh my God, look at the deficit! This proves that spending is just out of control!”

4. Start taking the axe to entitlement programs and the domestic discretionary budget.

That’s how it works, ever since supply-side became part of conversation. Ronald Reagan cut taxes and ran up deficits like mad, tripling, quadrupling them over Jimmy Carter’s level. George H.W. Bush raised taxes a little, but the economy was so in the doldrums that the deficit was still bad. Along came Bill Clinton, who had to fix it. He raised taxes. He did investments. He got the economy humming. He eliminated the deficit. Gave George W. Bush a surplus.

Then Dubya cut taxes. Twice. And started two unfunded-mandate wars. Up shot the deficit again. Ach, they all said! These deficits. We must cut spending. And bring Social Security under control.

But they never did cut spending, and popular will against Bush’s Social Security privatization scheme was so strong that that one died on the vine fast. Meanwhile they turned the banking system into a casino, and that crashed.

Then came Barack Obama, who, again, had to fix it. He wasn’t able to, quite enough, because his stimulus package should have been much larger than political realities allowed. But he did reduce the deficit substantially. As a percentage of GDP, it went from the 10 percent Bush handed him to around 2.5 percent. And he oversaw 75 consecutive months of job growth. He handed Donald Trump exactly the economy that 14 months ago Trump was saying was a disaster but now is saying is beautiful.

That’s the cycle, folks. That’s how it works. And now, thanks to the GOP, we’re about to open another gash in the deficit. They’ll try to slash away, but I hope and think that by and large they won’t succeed, because if you thought this tax bill was unpopular, wait till you see what happens when they start openly talking about tinkering with people’s nursing home care (Medicaid), prescription drug benefits (Medicare), and fixed pension distributions (Social Security).

And so a Democrat may well get elected in 2021, inheriting a mess from Trump. A deficit. Maybe a bad economy. And it will be on the Democrat to fix it again. And he or she will. But only to a point.

The Republicans, then in opposition, will obstruct and not allow the next Democrat to really fix things, because Republicans will know deep down that public investment would fix the economy, but they’ll rail against it on the grounds that it will… increase the deficit! So they will try to engineer things so that the recovery is tepid, so they can get the Democrat out and cut taxes for the rich one more time and balloon the deficit and start the whole grim process again.

That’s the game. It feels like we’re fated to play it for the next 50 years.

There’s one way out. The next time the Democrats are in power, they need to really turn the tables on tax reform. Not nip and tuck, but really fundamentally do something different. This isn’t the place for all the details. Maybe some future columns. But that will be the only way to break the pattern. They can’t do anything about what Congress is about to do. But they can smash the glass next time they have the hammer, and they’d better do it.

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Donald Trump Now Claims Infamous Access Hollywood Tape Is A FAKE!

In this ‘Dollemore Daily’ Jesse addresses reports from several outlets that Donald Trump has denied the authenticity of the infamous Access Hollywood tape released in October 2016.


Wednesday, November 22, 2017