Showing posts with label Federalism. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Federalism. Show all posts

Tuesday, November 10, 2020

America's Enemies Are Watching What Trump Does

 


When you see stories like this, it's easy to forget that America has enemies that will strike at us if they feel like they can get away with it. There is no downside to attacking American interests right now. There is no Department of Defense right now, in term of leadership or continuity. There is a flow of personnel out of key positions throughout the government and there is a shuffling of individuals who are so blatantly unqualified for their roles that it is laughable to imagine how they would ever get a chance to serve in government again.

The mere act of firing the Secretary of Defense is just icing on a cake made entirely of shit. Esper was a man so undistinguished and unqualified that, in any other era, he wouldn't even have much of a role at the Pentagon, outside of shining boots or swabbing the fucking deck. If you want to have it out with people who understand the history of government continuity and the need to ensure that America projects strength and stability at all times, have at it. What we have right now is a hair-on-fire catastrophe and all the lights are blinking red.

If America is attacked during the period between now and the inauguration of Joe Biden, it will be entirely because Trump couldn't handle being defeated. Everyone who is injured or killed will owe their fate to Trump's enormously diseased ego.

The only thing keeping our enemies back on their heels is the possibility that they see no upside to attacking us right now. America is doing a helluva good job destroying itself right now thanks to Trump and his Republican allies.

Tuesday, July 21, 2020

Trump's Secret Police Force


By now, we should all recognize the pattern in what Trump does.

Is there a serious, complicated problem facing the American people? If so, attack it with an army of incompetent, poorly-trained men rendered anonymous by masks and body armor. Strip them of identifying information, turn them loose with as much weaponry as they can get away with using, and don't forget to randomly punch some hippies along the way.

The bad old days are here and this is what they look like:
President Donald Trump has threatened to send more federal law enforcement officers to major US cities to control ongoing protests.
Mr Trump on Monday criticised a number of cities run by "liberal Democrats", including Chicago and New York, saying their leaders were afraid to act.
He said officers sent to Oregon had done a "fantastic job" restoring order amid days of protests in Portland.
Democrats accuse Mr Trump of trying to rally his Conservative base.
President Trump, a Republican, has been trailing in opinion polls behind his Democratic rival, Joe Biden, ahead of November's election.
Last month, Mr Trump declared himself the "president of law and order" in the wake of widespread protests over the death in police custody of African-American man George Floyd...
Now that no one is safe from the up-armored onslaught of Trump's personal security forces, I would like to welcome you, officially, to banana republic status. Your job is gone, your body and your home belong to the dictator, and there is no longer a right to free assembly. All of this brought to you by a group of feckless GOP senators who had the chance to do the right thing and said nah, fuck it. If this is allowed to stand, who knows if there will be an election this fall. Someone better do something, and they better do it fast.

As America's badly instructed media complex wakes up to the fact that, yep, Trump is a racist and a fascist and he will ruin everyone and every single American institution to keep himself out of prison, there are a handful of brave people out there resisting what is going on. Decent people everywhere with the means to do so might find themselves having to relocate to a state run by sane adults, and fast. An apathetic country slowly realizes that it must vote these clowns out of office and let a Democrat fix everything for the third time in my lifetime. I'd like to know how this ends because, dammit, moving is expensive.

But, hey. At least we got Netflix. As long as Trump doesn't take that away, he has a shot.

Saturday, April 18, 2020

You Have to Be Insane to Support Trump


Protests around the country have erupted because a handful of snowflakes don't believe in science and want to reopen everything before there is a way to protect people against COVID-19:
With new guidelines from the federal government, some governors have rolled out plans to begin lifting measures in place battling the spread of the coronavirus -- but other officials say it's still too early.
In Florida, residents flocked to Jacksonville beaches after officials announced a soft opening Friday night allowing for recreational activities for several hours each day. In Texas and Minnesota, state leaders announced they'd be lifting some of the measures in place in the coming days -- still requiring residents to keep a distance and avoid big crowds.
But some health experts and medical groups have warned the US is still behind in its testing capacity -- a key factor in the country's reopening process to help determine and track just how many people are infected.
It can't be because these people know something that we don't because they don't appear to comprehend a goddamned thing. And this comes at no cost to Trump because he has convinced the people who follow him that their deaths are worth the economic boost that a handful of millionaires are counting on to restore their stock portfolios.

This is greed at work. This is what Trump will do to hold onto power. There is no decency in any of this. It is a purely craven madness.

Reopening the country puts liberals on the defensive. We can't let people do something that will lead to their deaths. We can't let public safety suffer, nor can we risk the possibility that it a premature reopening will threaten hospital capacity, endanger the lives of first responders, and spread the virus through our population of vulnerable individuals. It's a particularly heartless move on Trump's behalf. The willingness to sacrifice human beings for propping up the economy and helping his re-election chances hits home because so many individuals now know the pain and agony of watching someone die with this illness.

This thing will kill an untold number of Americans because of Republican incompetence. You can't find any other way to argue otherwise. And yet, here we are, in the face of adversity and a handful of Americans can't seem to get it. This is a terrible time to be alive. The damage that has been done is staggering. And yet, we have to do everything we can to save as many people as possible, even those trying to get themselves sick and even those too fucking stupid to understand that what they're doing is insane.

Friday, March 23, 2018

The State of Jefferson




This kind of thing typically dies down when there's a Republican in the White House:

The breakaway state of Jefferson is a decades-old idea, but it has been revived in earnest in recent years by residents who say they are fed up with their voices being drowned out in Sacramento, where outspoken urban Democrats hold a vise grip on the state Legislature.

Supporters say overregulation has hobbled rural industries such as timber, mining and fishing and that the state's high taxes and cost of living are driving young people away, quickening the decline of small towns. They chafe under California's strict gun-control policies and are infuriated by its liberal immigration laws.

They cite California's new gas tax increase of 12 cents per gallon, saying it has an outsize impact on rural people who drive farther for work and basic needs such as hospitals, schools and grocery stores.

How likely is it that a new state will be broken off, like a piece of a Kit Kat bar, from California? Not likely at all, experts say.

Eric McGhee, a political scientist at the Public Policy Institute of California, said that while you can "never say never," there are too many legal obstacles to overcome.

"It's easy to think that because there's this large piece of territory, that it's a large share of California in terms of the population," he said. "That's just not the case. ... It's an absolutely minuscule portion of the state's population."

I do think it's reasonable to question whether or not the revival of this movement in California is somehow tied to Russia. We know that Russia wants to destabilize our political and social life in this country. This is why they support the NRA, after all. Why wouldn't they find a way to help witless people in California break up their own state?

These are not serious or reasonable people, by the way:

"You're the ones being exterminated by a lack of liberty," said Mark Baird, a Siskiyou County rancher.

Oh, do go on.

When there's a Democrat in the White House, talk of secession or creating new states (in order to add 2 Republican Senators and a Congressman or two) crops up because some people can't handle being governed in a responsible manner. The very idea that someone might get welfare benefits throws these people into a frenzy.

With Trump in the White House, there seems to be an unleashing of white supremacy and anti-government fervor that no one thought they would see. Actual Nazis are winning primaries, and the GOP, as a whole, has descended into the depths of madness.

Overall, I would say that there is a blue wave coming this year, and it will throw a lot of Republicans out of office, particularly in California and the Northeast. A plan to create a new state out of Northern California will get a lot of support once people realize that it would essentially be a carbon copy of Wyoming or Idaho. If you're facing oblivion, nothing like this looks too crazy.

You can't take this lightly, though. It's anti-American, anti-democratic rhetoric. We used to call it sedition until that term fell out of favor. Russia has supported several secessionist movements in this country in recent years, and it's all part of their effort to destablize Western democracy

A Russia-linked Facebook group asked a Texas secessionist movement if it would participate in a series of anti-immigrant, anti-Hillary Clinton rallies it was planning to hold across the state last November, the group's president told Business Insider on Thursday.

"When they decided to start doing all these 'Texit' rallies, they reached out and wanted us to participate," said Daniel Miller, the president of the Texas Nationalist Movement. "And we said 'thanks, but no thanks.'"

The Facebook group, called Heart of Texas, had over 225,000 followers as of last summer. It was shut down last week as part of Facebook's takedown of accounts and pages "affiliated with one another and likely operated out of Russia," a Facebook spokesman told Business Insider on Wednesday.

Russia has a long history of working to cultivate Western separatist groups. The group Yes California, for instance, set up a makeshift embassy in Moscow in December in partnership with far-right Russian nationalists who enjoy Kremlin support while promoting secessionist movements in Europe and the United States.

If there was ever any doubt that we need a government that will protect us from outside influences, there you go.

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Kentucky Will Get a Taste of What It Feels Like to be Kansas




In American politics, there is no hope for people who vote against their economic self-interests:

The Associated Press projects that Republican Matt Bevin has defeated Democrat Jack Conway in Kentucky’s gubernatorial election.

Bevin, an ultraconservative businessman who launched an unsuccessful primary challenge to Senate GOP Leader Mitch McConnell in 2014, promised to roll back the commonwealth’s expansion of Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act and dismantle Kentucky’s popular health insurance exchange, Kynect. Under Democratic Gov. Steve Beshear, Kentucky was one of the few Southern states to embrace the 2010 health reform law. Conway pledged to continue Beshear’s health reform policies.


Polls of the race were few and far between, but generally gave Conway, the commonwealth’s attorney general, a slight edge. But with both candidates mired in the low 40s heading into Election Day, the outcome was difficult to predict.


Do you live in Kentucky? Do yourself a favor and leave if you can. Ask for relocation assistance if it's available. The stated goal of Matt Bevin is to destroy the economic infrastructure of an entire American state in order to satisfy his own ideological bent towards what can only be described as evil. Yes, it is evil to take something away from people that keeps them alive. You take away health care and the result is the expected one--people fucking die for lack of access to proper care. 




This is what Federalism will look like for the next few decades. Damage and ruin for many, economic normalcy and progress for others. We'll have people living and thriving in one state and we'll have bankruptcy, death, and desperation on the other side of an otherwise insignificant border. The states have gone mad and elected extremists because of the fear of abortion/guns/federal bogeyman. I realize that this is immensely sad for the people who voted to keep their health care insurance and to keep this insane wingnut from destroying the economy of Kentucky. 




But these states are now incubators for craziness and extremism. They are very, very friendly for corporate interests and for anyone opposed to common sense. No one cares enough to vote anymore and governance is now a fondly cherished memory. Another domino has fallen and no one is paying attention to the sound it makes when it lands on anyone unfortunate enough to be sick.






It does no good to sneer at the intentional harm being done to states like Kentucky. Nobody reads anymore, nobody knows nothing, and nobody votes. Cherish the fall of decency. Embrace the pawn shop economy of being lucky or being dead.

Kentucky Will Get a Taste of What It Feels Like to be Kansas


In American politics, there is no hope for people who vote against their economic self-interests:
The Associated Press projects that Republican Matt Bevin has defeated Democrat Jack Conway in Kentucky’s gubernatorial election.

Bevin, an ultraconservative businessman who launched an unsuccessful primary challenge to Senate GOP Leader Mitch McConnell in 2014, promised to roll back the commonwealth’s expansion of Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act and dismantle Kentucky’s popular health insurance exchange, Kynect. Under Democratic Gov. Steve Beshear, Kentucky was one of the few Southern states to embrace the 2010 health reform law. Conway pledged to continue Beshear’s health reform policies.
Polls of the race were few and far between, but generally gave Conway, the commonwealth’s attorney general, a slight edge. But with both candidates mired in the low 40s heading into Election Day, the outcome was difficult to predict.

Do you live in Kentucky? Do yourself a favor and leave if you can. Ask for relocation assistance if it's available. The stated goal of Matt Bevin is to destroy the economic infrastructure of an entire American state in order to satisfy his own ideological bent towards what can only be described as evil. Yes, it is evil to take something away from people that keeps them alive. You take away health care and the result is the expected one--people fucking die for lack of access to proper care. 

This is what Federalism will look like for the next few decades. Damage and ruin for many, economic normalcy and progress for others. We'll have people living and thriving in one state and we'll have bankruptcy, death, and desperation on the other side of an otherwise insignificant border. The states have gone mad and elected extremists because of the fear of abortion/guns/federal bogeyman. I realize that this is immensely sad for the people who voted to keep their health care insurance and to keep this insane wingnut from destroying the economy of Kentucky. 

But these states are now incubators for craziness and extremism. They are very, very friendly for corporate interests and for anyone opposed to common sense. No one cares enough to vote anymore and governance is now a fondly cherished memory. Another domino has fallen and no one is paying attention to the sound it makes when it lands on anyone unfortunate enough to be sick.

It does no good to sneer at the intentional harm being done to states like Kentucky. Nobody reads anymore, nobody knows nothing, and nobody votes. Cherish the fall of decency. Embrace the pawn shop economy of being lucky or being dead.

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Ignorance is a Virtue for a Republican


This will not hurt Joni Ernst at all:
Joni Ernst, the Republican nominee in Iowa, doesn’t want “federal legislators” to pass laws that “states are considering nullifying,” like Obamacare.
Joni Ernst, the Republican nominee for U.S. Senate in Iowa, appears to believe states can nullify federal laws. In a video obtained by The Daily Beast, Ernst said on September 13, 2013 at a forum held by the Iowa Faith & Freedom Coalition that Congress should not pass any laws “that the states would consider nullifying.”
I'm not sure what happened to the people of Iowa. They used to love the Humanities. They used to be champions of learning and knowledge. They used to be conservative but enlightened enough to deal with tough issues and very knowledgeable about how this country was supposed to work. They have a long history of electing people who are sober and responsible, except of course in Northwestern Iowa where they keep re-electing one of the most insane members of Congress ever, Steve King.

Iowa must now be full of yammering old buffoons who watch nothing but Fox News and the 700 Club.

In the end, oh well. The Founders have spoken (but it took a Civil War to settle the issue of nullification, once and for all, except in the fevered imagination of Joni Ernst). The ignorance of Joni Ernst will simply get her more votes from shut-ins and cranks.

Monday, May 19, 2014

Take the Money and Run


I think it would be fair to say that an accountability moment and a firm reality check has arrived for everyone who said that Obamacare is the devil that will soshalism this country into the hands of the Kraken.

When given the option to stand behind their principles and continue destroying the lives of people who need the health care provisions of the PPACA, Republicans governors are taking the money that's on the table and they're lying about it. Mike Pence of Indiana is lying when he denies folding in the face of a Medicare benefit that the people of Indiana desperately need. He should go into each and every election from now on wearing an Obama sticker on his nose so that people remember how he gave in to the commies and allowed the Hoosiers to horn in on those Federal dollars.

We heard this time and again--Obamacare will destroy America. That was absolute bullshit, of course. And you would think that future elections would hinge on that but they won't. Without a viable, working media to hold them accountable, the Mike Pences of the GOP will be claiming Obamacare was Romneycare all along and they'll claim it as their own.

Friday, December 6, 2013

I Disagree With This


I think that we should honor Nelson Mandela and I think it is more than appropriate to remember how Ronald Reagan and Dick Cheney (and most conservatives) were absolutely wrong about him. But this is wrong:
Word of Nelson Mandela's death spread quickly across the United States, bringing with it a mix of reverence and grief for a man who was born in South Africa but in the end belonged to the world. 
President Barack Obama ordered American flags to be lowered immediately to half-staff until Monday in tribute to Mandela, a rare honor for a foreign leader.
We lower the flag often enough as it is. But, to do so for someone who is not an American is inappropriate. This is now a question of Federalism--will the various states comply with this or will there be holdouts in the South?

And there will be the inevitable comparisons to Margaret Thatcher. Ask the Scots how they felt about that.

Monday, November 18, 2013

Obamacare and Federalism


Obamacare is working in states that have embraced the idea that this is an issue of Federalism, not ideology. Our working media is not capable of explaining this, of course, since everything is a horse race.

Each of the states that create and evolve and implement along with the Affordable Care Act will find a way to make the system thrive. The states that choose ideology and plan for it to fail will make it fail at their level. It's as simple as that.

If you want to have health care, plan on moving to a state where they understand Federalism.