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Has U.S. Democracy Been Trumped? Bernie Sanders wants to know who owns America?

#11601 User is offline   Winstonm 

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Posted 2018-November-16, 12:28

View Posty66, on 2018-November-16, 10:43, said:

From Why the Perfect Red-State Democrat Lostby Alec MacGillis at NYT:

Taylor Sappington is exactly the kind of candidate his party should want in Ohio. But he couldn’t get union support.


Ohio, we have a problem.



Quote

What he learned when he asked around, and what I later confirmed, was that the unions were, in many cases, making a grimly pragmatic decision in his race and others around the state. The Democrats had fallen to such a woeful level in Ohio state government that unions felt as if they had no choice but to make friends, or at least nonenemies, with some Republicans, in hopes of staving off anti-union measures such as “right-to-work” legislation and elimination of prevailing-wage standards.


This decision is based on the false premise that the Republican party can be reasonable. Sometimes, resistance is the only option.
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#11602 User is offline   y66 

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Posted 2018-November-16, 12:42

From Democrat Jared Golden Declared Winner in Tight Maine House Race by Jon Kamp at WSJ:

Quote

Democratic challenger Jared Golden beat Republican incumbent Bruce Poliquin in a closely contested race for Maine’s second congressional district, the secretary of state determined Thursday after running the state’s unique ranked-choice tabulation process.

Mr. Golden’s victory and another Democratic win—declared late Thursday by the Associated Press, by law professor Katie Porter over GOP Rep. Mimi Walters in California—gave Democrats a net pickup of 36 House seats with six GOP-held districts left outstanding.

Democrats are considered favorites in two of the remaining contests, while Republicans have an advantage in the other four. The final Maine vote was tallied amid a still-unresolved lawsuit from Mr. Poliquin, a two-term incumbent who sought to block the ranked-choice process.

Mr. Poliquin led by about 2,000 votes after an initial round of counting in the four-way race. But he didn’t clear 50% support, which the ranked-choice process requires for a candidate to win outright. Two independents in the race collectively got about 8% of the vote.

That triggered another tabulation process, run on Thursday, to reallocate ballots from those independent candidates to whomever voters ranked as their backup choices. After that tally, Mr. Golden had 50.53% of the vote to 49.47% percent for Mr. Poliquin, Secretary of State Matthew Dunlap said.

“It looks like Jared Golden is the apparent winner of the ranked-choice election,” Mr. Dunlap said. His office declared Mr. Golden the winner by just 2,905 votes after the ranked-choice voting count.

Mr. Golden, a 36-year-old Marine veteran and more recently assistant majority leader in Maine’s House, praised the new voting process Thursday. He said it is better than actual runoff elections, which some other states use when a first-round of voting fails to yield a majority winner.

“Who in this state wants to see another campaign commercial wedged in between Thanksgiving and Christmas? I don’t think anyone,” Mr. Golden said. “So I think this was a good system.”

Maine voters backed the ranked-choice system twice, via ballot measures in 2016 and again earlier this year. The ranked-choice process is used in some cities, but this marks the first time it was used to decide a U.S. Congressional race.

Mr. Poliquin hasn’t conceded the seat. He sued with other plaintiffs this week to block the ranked-choice process, arguing in a federal lawsuit that it violated the U.S. Constitution. U.S. District Judge Lance Walker on Thursday declined to issue a temporary restraining order to stop the tabulation.

“As it stands, the citizens of Maine have rejected the policy arguments Plaintiffs advance against” ranked-choice voting, Judge Walker wrote.

The lawsuit is pending, however, as the judge hasn’t ruled on the constitutional question.

“It is now officially clear I won the constitutional ‘one-person, one-vote’ first choice election on Election Day that has been used in Maine for more than one hundred years,” Mr. Poliquin said in a statement after the ranked-choice count. “We will proceed with our constitutional concerns about the rank vote algorithm.”

In the rank-choice system voters can rank candidates in order of preference, allowing them to influence an election’s final result even if they pick an unlikely winner as their first choice. This was by design: Ranked-choice proponents say the system allows for people to vote for independents and third-party candidates without worrying their votes are wasted.

If no one candidate clears 50% of the first-choice votes, the lowest-ranking candidates are rejected in successive rounds while their ballots are reallocated to their voters’ next picks. The process concludes with a winner who has majority support.

On Thursday, the actual counting took mere minutes. But it took several days to deliver paper ballots and tabulator-machine memory devices from the Nov. 6 election to Augusta, Maine, and then load them into a program that tallied the final results.

Mr. Golden’s win not only pads Democrats’ lead in the retaken House, but gives the party a rare victory on rural ground that had recently swung to the right. Mr. Poliquin first won the district four years ago, ending 20 years of Democratic representation. The district also supported President Trump by a comfortable margin in 2016 after backing former President Barack Obama twice.

Democrats had a strong showing in Maine this election. The party won a majority in the state Senate, kept House control and won an open governor’s seat to replace the term-limited Republican Paul LePage.

Is ranked choice the solution to our comatose, rigged democracy?
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#11603 User is offline   johnu 

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Posted 2018-November-16, 13:34

View Posty66, on 2018-November-16, 12:42, said:



A typical hypocritical response by the Republican. I'm sure Poliquin would have had no problem if he had won due to ranked choice voting and would have defended the decision with the best lawyers he could hire.
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#11604 User is offline   Winstonm 

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Posted 2018-November-16, 18:35

Sung to the tune of "I Write the Songs" by Barry Manilow.

I've been lying forever
Right from my very first word
My casinos go bankrupt and my airlines crash
I am The Donald, and I am absurd

I write the answers for the Mueller probe
I write the answers and it's getting old
I write answers and I need to lie
I need to lie, I need to lie

Oh, my lies don't have a chance
to get me safely out of this jam
Moscow might be the place for me to move
or I could break the ground to start
on a Ukraine automart
or a hotel, a motel,
a motel, what the hell,
somewhere there's got to be
a place for me to get well

I write the answers for the Mueller probe
I write the answers and it's getting old
I write the answers and I need to lie
I need to lie, I need to lie.
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#11605 User is offline   johnu 

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Posted 2018-November-17, 23:36

Orange County, A Conservative Bastion, Turns Blue For The First Time In Decades

Quote

Earlier this year, Orange County Republican Party Chair Fred Whitaker laughed off the notion of a blue wave in his backyard.

“They think we’re the new battleground ... It’s a Hail Mary play. It’s desperation,” Whitaker said in an interview in March.

“Let the Democrats spend tens of millions of dollars here,” he added. “Let them die on the hill in Orange County.”


Good call Fred. I think you're ready for a gig on the Fox Propaganda Channel.
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#11606 User is offline   Winstonm 

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Posted 2018-November-18, 13:39

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President Donald Trump told Fox News he wasn’t aware Matt Whitaker was a sharp critic of special counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation before he named him acting attorney general


No doubt he did not think Whitaker a "sharp" critic but a dull-witted critic who was on his side. ;)

Speaking of avoiding responsibility, which is axiomatic when talking about Dennison, I wonder if he now blames his birth solely on his mother as he was not aware of the occurrence, and, in fact, wasn't even there? :o
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#11607 User is online   PassedOut 

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Posted 2018-November-18, 13:58

America’s Last Line of Defense

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Now he hunched over a desk wedged between an overturned treadmill and two turtle tanks, scanning through conservative forums on Facebook for something that might inspire his next post. He was 6-foot-6 and 325 pounds, and he typed several thousand words each day in all capital letters. He noticed a photo online of Trump standing at attention for the national anthem during a White House ceremony. Behind the president were several dozen dignitaries, including a white woman standing next to a black woman, and Blair copied the picture, circled the two women in red and wrote the first thing that came into his mind.

“President Trump extended an olive branch and invited Michelle Obama and Chelsea Clinton,” Blair wrote. “They thanked him by giving him ‘the finger’ during the national anthem. Lock them up for treason!”

Blair finished typing and looked again at the picture. The white woman was not in fact Chelsea Clinton but former White House strategist Hope Hicks. The black woman was not Michelle Obama but former Trump aide Omarosa Newman. Neither Obama nor Clinton had been invited to the ceremony. Nobody had flipped off the president. The entire premise was utterly ridiculous, which was exactly Blair’s point.

“We live in an Idiocracy,” read a small note on Blair’s desk, and he was taking full advantage. In a good month, the advertising revenue from his website earned him as much as $15,000, and it had also won him a loyal army of online fans.

Not as much money as InfoWars, Breitbart, or Fox, but I know for a fact that lots of couples in Upper Michigan live on less than $15,000 per month.
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#11608 User is offline   johnu 

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Posted 2018-November-18, 15:47

Another OMG moment

Dennison suggests venerated Navy SEAL commander should have found bin Laden faster

For one thing, it was the job of the intelligence agencies to follow leads and track down bin Laden. For another, bin Laden went off the grid with no electronic signature and only meticulous work in tracking down bin Laden's courier got them on his trail. Third, Dennison is an idiot. Lock him up.
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#11609 User is online   sharon j 

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Posted 2018-November-18, 17:52

View Postjohnu, on 2018-November-18, 15:47, said:

Another OMG moment

Dennison suggests venerated Navy SEAL commander should have found bin Laden faster

For one thing, it was the job of the intelligence agencies to follow leads and track down bin Laden. For another, bin Laden went off the grid with no electronic signature and only meticulous work in tracking down bin Laden's courier got them on his trail. Third, Dennison is an idiot. Lock him up.


I was horrified at Trump's statements. The man has no shame!
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#11610 User is online   barmar 

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Posted 2018-November-19, 00:58

View Postsharon j, on 2018-November-18, 17:52, said:

I was horrified at Trump's statements. The man has no shame!

I was going to say that we figured that out quite some time ago. But it does seem like he keeps on managing to find new lows.

#11611 User is offline   Winstonm 

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Posted 2018-November-19, 17:17

WTF?

Quote

The Pentagon announced all active-duty troops sent to the U.S. southern border ahead of a migrant caravan’s arrival will begin to drawdown, just as that caravan of asylum-seeking refugees began to arrive at a port of entry in Tijuana, Mexico.


This looks like the script for a Monty Python movie. When approached by the killer rabbit, the king and his men yell, "Run away" and flee.
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#11612 User is offline   Winstonm 

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Posted 2018-November-20, 16:29

NYT

Quote

By Michael S. Schmidt and Maggie Haberman
Nov. 20, 2018

WASHINGTON — President Trump told the White House counsel in the spring that he wanted to order the Justice Department to prosecute two of his political adversaries: his 2016 challenger, Hillary Clinton, and the former F.B.I. director James B. Comey, according to two people familiar with the conversation.

The lawyer, Donald F. McGahn II, rebuffed the president, saying that he had no authority to order a prosecution. Mr. McGahn said that while he could request an investigation, that too could prompt accusations of abuse of power. To underscore his point, Mr. McGahn had White House lawyers write a memo for Mr. Trump warning that if he asked law enforcement to investigate his rivals, he could face a range of consequences, including possible impeachment.

The encounter was one of the most blatant examples yet of how Mr. Trump views the typically independent Justice Department as a tool to be wielded against his political enemies. It took on additional significance in recent weeks when Mr. McGahn left the White House and Mr. Trump appointed a relatively inexperienced political loyalist, Matthew G. Whitaker, as the acting attorney general.


Well, isn't that special. :blink:
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#11613 User is offline   Winstonm 

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Posted 2018-November-21, 12:07

Dennison's nightmare begins:

Quote

The House intelligence committee's incoming Democratic majority is taking its first steps to follow Donald Trump's money, The Daily Beast has learned.

The committee is looking to hire money-laundering and forensic accounting experts, three sources familiar with the plans confirm to The Daily Beast. One Democratic committee office said the purpose of the potential new hires is to examine unanswered financial questions about Trump and Russia, but their work could apply broadly across the panel’s intelligence oversight.

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#11614 User is offline   Chas_P 

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Posted 2018-November-22, 08:14

Hi guys. Just cruising through to wish you all a Happy Thanksgiving.

#11615 User is offline   hrothgar 

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Posted 2018-November-22, 08:30

View PostChas_P, on 2018-November-22, 08:14, said:

Hi guys. Just cruising through to wish you all a Happy Thanksgiving.


For once, something I can agree with

Happy holidays to all

When you are eating your turkey, spare a thought for poor hrothgar who is probaby debating whether or not to buy an overpriced microwaved baguette at 40,000 feet.
(Hopefully the food in Tokyo/Bangkok/Siem Reap will compensate for the lack of dressing)
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#11616 User is offline   Chas_P 

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Posted 2018-November-22, 08:51

View Posthrothgar, on 2018-November-22, 08:30, said:

For once, something I can agree with

Happy holidays to all

When you are eating your turkey, spare a thought for poor hrothgar who is probaby debating whether or not to buy an overpriced microwaved baguette at 40,000 feet.


Actually the correct terminology is Flight Level four zero zero. "Overpriced" is eminently correct. Enjoy your trip. :)

#11617 User is online   kenberg 

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Posted 2018-November-22, 11:39

Yes indeed, best holiday wishes to everyone including, for example, Canadians who I think have a different day for this celebration.

Elizabeth Bruenig has a column that meanders over several topics but I quote this:

Quote

Every other holiday has some other activity or occasion to recommend it, but Thanksgiving is a feast to celebrate feasting and to express gratitude for everything that can't be properly commodified: family, friendship, the autumn season.



We are joining some family for dinner. Enjoy

Ken
Ken
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#11618 User is offline   Winstonm 

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Posted 2018-November-22, 17:02

What makes those of us who are Americans Americans? Just one thing. The rule book. It's called the Constitution, and we agree to abide by those rules. That's what makes us Americans. That's all that makes us Americans.
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#11619 User is offline   Al_U_Card 

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Posted 2018-November-22, 17:30

View PostWinstonm, on 2018-November-22, 17:02, said:

What makes those of us who are Americans Americans? Just one thing. The rule book. It's called the Constitution, and we agree to abide by those rules. That's what makes us Americans. That's all that makes us Americans.

That makes you law-abiding citizens of your country. Birth locality is the only criterion for being American (United States version).
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#11620 User is offline   Winstonm 

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Posted 2018-November-22, 23:26

View PostAl_U_Card, on 2018-November-22, 17:30, said:

That makes you law-abiding citizens of your country. Birth locality is the only criterion for being American (United States version).


You're wrong, and as argument I present the case of Anwar al-Awlaki, who was killed by the CIA as a member of al-quada. Technically, he would have been considered a U.S. citizen, along with his son and daughter, yet all three had renounced their allegiance to the U.S.A. by actively working with an enemy of the U.S. All three were killed. The argument is simple; unless one accepts being governed by rules and abides by those rules, one cannot claim the advantages those rules and that government provide. One cannot assume the benefits of citizenship without acquiescing to being governed as a citizen, regardless of geographic location at birth.

I repeat: what makes us Americans is our mutual agreement to abide by one set of rules.
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