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R.G.’s Roundup: A Regulator in Conflict, Happy Trump Voters, and Teacher Sex

Our favorite political reads of the week.

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Beyond here, there be dragons—or at least the most interesting articles I’ve read this week by other writers.

How blind is this Texas oil regulator’s blind trust?

by Steve Thompson

The Dallas Morning News

Texas law allows politicians to set up “blind trusts” that really are more what I call winky-blinky trusts—often not really blind or managed by a disinterested party. The generally accepted idea of a brother-in-law deal is one that is not arms-length, and the Morning News tells us of a literal brother-in-law deal involving a state oil regulator.

“With millions of dollars at stake, an Exxon Mobil unit went before Texas regulators to argue against a restriction on its operations. One member of the Railroad Commission, Ryan Sitton, took the lead on examining the issue. Then he voted in favor of the company, which got its way.

Sitton didn’t disclose that Exxon is a client of his business.”

Sure, Sitton’s company is in a blind trust, but one run by someone he probably regularly sees at family holiday functions. If Sitton’s job fell under federal ethics laws, the only trust that is blind is one in which you put cash assets under the management of a completely unrelated party. If the office holder knows of the existence of an asset in the trust, it’s not blind.

Trump voters surrounding liberal Austin are celebrating.

by Jonathan Tilove and Claire Osborn

Austin American-Statesman

Austin is the blueberry in the tomato soup of Texas, the Democratic stronghold surrounded by red rock Republican voters. It was not terribly surprising when tens of thousands protested the inauguration of Donald Trump as president in Austin. But out there in the hinterlands, there is a quiet satisfaction with the change in Washington.

From Day 1, Donald Trump’s presidency has roiled Austin.

But on a gorgeous February day barely an hour northwest of the Texas capital in bucolic Burnet County, habitués of the Blue Bonnet Cafe were savoring the first two weeks of the Trump presidency like a slice of the timeless eatery’s best-selling coconut cream pie.

“Love him,” said Dan Ross, who lives in Cottonwood Shores and is a police officer in Horseshoe Bay. “Think he’s doing great”

Love him, hate him, but no doubt that we live in interesting times

Many teacher sexual improprieties are never prosecuted

by Julie Chang

Austin American-Statesman

Educators have a name for teachers who engage in improper relationships with students, get fired without repercussions, and end up finding a job in a new school district: pass the trash. Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick—with the backing of Governor Greg Abbott—has made ending the practice one of his top priorities for the current legislative session, with legislation to impose penalties on school administrators who fail to report these relationships. The Statesman‘s Julie Chang took a hard look at how difficult it is to get information on teachers who breach the professional wall of personal relations.

The American-Statesman reviewed the cases of 686 teachers who surrendered their teaching licenses or whose teaching licenses were revoked by the Texas Education Agency between 2010 and 2016, after the TEA launched investigations for possible improper teacher-student relationships. Allegations ran the gamut, including sending flirtatious text messages, kissing students and having sex with students in their classrooms.

The Statesman’s analysis, the first of its kind, found that teachers in less than half the cases were charged, leaving a trail of detailed information for potential future employers, accessible through criminal background checks, court documents and media coverage.

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  • anonyfool

    OK, for once in possibly a lifetime I agree with Dan Patrick – on the sex offender teacher thing.

    • roadgeek

      Concur completely. I have also shifted my position on female teachers and male students; both male and female teachers should be punished with equal vigor. Our judicial system has a double standard when it comes to female teachers, and that needs to stop. A predator is a predator.

      • WUSRPH

        High school boys used to dream about a hot female teacher. It looks like some are now finding them.

        • roadgeek

          Well, i think that chemistry between certain young female teachers and adolescent males has always been there, but there were once societal controls that kept it from happening often. Those controls have collapsed, as we live in a hypersexualized society where an attitude of anything goes is the norm. Young women yield to that. It’s a consequence of no consequences. The pendulum is finally beginning to swing, I think.

          Now we had male teachers who took advantage of female students, and I was in high school in the late 70’s. That has always been the case. Should be jail for both men and women, and I think going forward that will happen more and more.

          • SpiritofPearl

            “Young women yield to that.” What a hoot you are, Geek! What about those young men? Why do they get a pass?

          • WUSRPH

            I guess you can blame St. Paul.

          • SpiritofPearl

            It goes back much farther in time than dismal St. Paul.

          • John Johnson

            That church must have really done a number on you.

          • WUSRPH

            I suggest you read a little of St. Paul’s comments on women before you condemn a woman for not being that much of a fan of his.

          • John Johnson

            I happen to think Paul might be the false aposile mentioned by John in Revelations.

  • roadgeek

    Yes, ICE is beginning to again enforce the immigration laws here in Berkeley on the Colorado, and it’s driving the resident progressives batshit crazy. I’m loving it. Yes, indeed. And I’m waiting eagerly for the Green-and-Whites to appear in neighborhoods near me. Awesome.

    • SpiritofPearl

      Of course, you are! American Renaissance is your favorite blog

    • WUSRPH

      They have done this in Austin prior to Trump. But you are right about how it sets off howls.

      • robintexas

        Yes, under the Obama administration they did not just raid places where CRIMINAL ALIENS were suspected of being. They also raided places of employment. The Chicken processing plants of Arkansas, the beef processing plants on the Texas Panhandle, etc. etc.

        So we have seen such raids before. Plenty of times. The difference is Donald Trump’s executive order to focus on the CRIMINAL element, and deport them. I say it’s about time!

        • José

          So churches are considered criminal locales under the new administration. Got it.

        • BCinBCS

          robintexas proclaimed: “The difference is Donald Trump’s executive order to focus on the CRIMINAL element, and deport them. I say it’s about time!

          An example that got a lot of attention last week was the mother of two who, rather than be on welfare, got a fake social security number so that she could work. She was caught at work and charged with a felony for using that fake government document. She was allowed to remain in the U.S. with her American citizen children under Obama but was required to report-in every six months, which she did. The last time that she reported, now under Comrade Trump/Bannon, she was arrested. Even though she had been in the U.S. for 20 years as a productive person with a job and a family, she was immediately deported to Mexico, leaving her children behind.

          I’m glad that Trump is finally getting rid of those dangerous criminal felons and is not a bleeding-heart trying to keep families together. /s

          • John Johnson

            You just don’t seem to know where to draw the line. She came into the country illegally; we paid for her to birth two children here; she broke the law a second time by securing a bogus SS card. Either we begin enforcing laws or we change them. Right now, they are beginning to be enforced.

          • BCinBCS

            You are a true Christian.

          • John Johnson

            Nope. I’m not…as I have stated before. If we Christians all acted Christ like, we would be overrun and eradicated from the face of the earth in no time. Christ knew the inevitable; we do, too…we just aren’t Christian enough to let it happen in our lifetimes or in the immediate generations who follow. No Ghandi like soft words from us, nor turning the other cheek. No pandering to a religion that wants us wiped out and gone. You won’t find “Kill all the infidels” in the New Testament; you will find it in the Quran. http://www.thereligionofpeace.com/pages/quran/violence.aspx

          • BCinBCS

            You are a scared old white man.

          • WUSRPH

            But you sure found it in ihe Old Testament where it was done more than once. And while it may not be written in the New,it has been practiced under it too. You claim a difference for Christians that history does not justify.

          • John Johnson

            I claim that the OT is the Jews “Bible”. The NT is the Christian’s. Real Christians follow the NT and use the OT as testament, through lineage and specific prognostications, that Christ is who Christians say he is. Churches, and preachers, want to continue to tout certain aspects of the OT and forget the rest (cloven hooves, shellfish, violent retribution, etc). If Christians were Christ like and acted like he did, we would drop all borders, take in everyone, give everything we have to the more needy, not lift a finger to fight off those wanting to chop off our heads, etc. This said, I am a puesdo Christian. I don’t think that way. I am a sinner. I hope He forgives me.

          • BCinBCS

            JJ, it’s sad that you and others like you insist that this country adopt your admitted failed Christian values. The irony is that we “godless liberals” – an insult originated by you conservative Christians – are more Christ-like than you.

            None of of us that advocate for a more sane immigration policy want open borders. We merely ask that common sense be used when formulation that policy.

            If you are an undocumented alien brought here as a child, raised here your whole life then we believe that it is unreasonable and immoral to force you to leave the only country that you know for deportation to the “foreign” land of your birth. And anyone in that position should not be denied the full rights of this country such as being able to attend college.

            If you have lived in this country illegally for an extended period of time, have a family with American citizen children and possibly an American citizen spouse, you should not be deported due to the catch-22 of having used a false social security number so that you could support you and your family.

            If sending you back to your country of origin may result in your torture or death, you should not be removed from the U.S. even if you came here illegally.

            These are but a few of the common sense exceptions to the rules of deportation that you conservative Christians insist on strictly following.

          • WUSRPH

            From what you say about what Christians should do today—-especially not following the teachings of Jesus because of the possible impact of doing what he told you to do—he would have a message for you: Revelation 3-16.

          • BCinBCS
        • WUSRPH

          That was the same order Obama gave two years ago….but you obviously were not paying attention.

  • SpiritofPearl
  • John Bernard Books

    Thanks to Lt Guv Patrick and President Trump it is time to drive a stake through the heart of the dem party…..
    “Since then, Democrats have lost 1200 national and statewide seats. And earlier this week, Stewart Lawrence, writing in the Daily Caller, and picking up on a study by the centrist “Third Way” think tank, noted that the Democrats are now almost exclusively a coastal party, with a couple of lone interior outposts such as Chicago and Minneapolis.
    According to the study, while Hillary Clinton beat Trump in California, New York and Massachusetts by 30%, Trump won the rest of the states by 52-48%.”
    http://www.breitbart.com/big-government/2017/02/10/schweikart-democrats-worse-shape-even-think/?utm_source=facebook&utm_medium=social

    After 100 years of the progressive movement trying to destroy each and every American’s personal liberties, the dems have become the regressive party and maybe a thing of the past.

  • John Bernard Books

    Thanks to Lt Guv Patrick and President Trump it is time to drive a stake through the heart of the dem party…..
    “Since then, Democrats have lost 1200 national and statewide seats. And earlier this week, Stewart Lawrence, writing in the Daily Caller, and picking up on a study by the centrist “Third Way” think tank, noted that the Democrats are now almost exclusively a coastal party, with a couple of lone interior outposts such as Chicago and Minneapolis.
    According to the study, while Hillary Clinton beat Trump in California, New York and Massachusetts by 30%, Trump won the rest of the states by 52-48%.”
    http://www.breitbart.com/big-government/2017/02/10/schweikart-democrats-worse-shape-even-think/?utm_source=facebook&utm_medium=social
    After 100 years of the progressive movement trying to destroy each and every American’s personal liberties, the dems have become a regressive party

    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/c7e6fb87d778b94bea27bd970980911efc917765208c1a0ce9530256bb77c131.jpg

    • Cherylawalker

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    • Evarkrueger

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    • John Johnson

      They are in denial. They make excuses. They throw fits. Their only plan is to disrupt. They have no leadership. We need to pass out crying towels.

      • WUSRPH

        How many times did the US House vote to repeal the ACA? Dozens. How many times did it have a plan to replace it? Never. We are still waiting for one…..Real leadership and working for the good of America wasn’t it?

        • BCinBCS

          How many times did the US House vote to repeal the ACA? Dozens.

          Actually, they tried to repeal it over 60 times.

  • BCinBCS

    Since it’s the weekend, how about a little humor?
    I saw this tweet on a web site and thought, in light of the ongoing Comrade Trump/Bannon sponsored “illegal immigrant scare”, that it was humorous.

    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/394cf1c45eb0e5f9de2b4679e1c240fe287ca62c2b30486c49ddbcc373c1f7e6.jpg

    • SpiritofPearl

      The Gestapo are at work.

      • robintexas

        You really really need to read some history, it is obvious you have absolutely no idea who the Gestapo were, what their job was, or how they went about it.

        • WUSRPH

          And you probably cannot distinguish between the Gestapo (political police) and the SS?

  • John Bernard Books

    You liberals stop it, my sides are hurting, I’ve got tears running down my cheeks and I can’t stop laughing at you……

  • SpiritofPearl
    • donuthin2

      Probably the grain growing Midwest farmers even more so. Grain farmers across the country depend on exports as we do not have the capacity to use anything like our production and prices are currently depressed so the effect could be catastrophic We will see. Supporters of Trump will be the largest victim of his policy. I doubt their vote was based on principle, but rather total naivety. .How will that play out in four years? Democrats seem to be moving further left and Republicans further right. I can yet imagine who their option might be.

      • SpiritofPearl

        I suspect that these crackdowns are performance art for the Trumpheads and will slack off when El Caudillo and his crew of Merry Pranksters lose focus again. The question is how much financial damage farmers will incur. Millions of dollars worth of produce may lie rotting in the fields.

        • donuthin2

          The problem for grain farmers across the country will not be the lack of labor but rather the lack of export markets. There was a time when buyers had few reasonable options, but now many countries have grain for export. Isolationism does not work for agriculture.

          • SpiritofPearl

            I agree. My point was that produce farming and grain farming require different management/labor strategies. Grain farming requires little hands-on labor compared with, say, strawberries.

            Trade wars will hurt us all. He’s already relinquished east Asia to the Chinese.

          • robintexas

            I can see none of you has ever actually spent time on a farm. Or even in the central part of the country. It is NOT all farms, and certainly not all grain farms. These comments are about as ignorant of the subject as possible…. Good Grief.

          • WUSRPH

            Drive thru Illinois, etc. as I have for several summers and see miles and miles of corn and a ferw soybeans and then tell me that farming there is not primarily grains.

      • robintexas

        I think the height of naivety is thinking that only you have the answers to any and all problems. Ridiculous.

        • BCinBCS

          But isn’t that exactly what you are doing?

      • John Johnson

        How will the grain farmers be hurt?

        • WUSRPH

          In a trade war they could loose their markets. The other country can buy from Canada, etc. instead of us. That’s how.

          • John Johnson

            Canada…the bread basket of the world! Not.

            We subsidize farmers when they have bad years. We subsidize farmers to provide corn to a carbon heavy, inefficient ethanol program; the largest pork processor in the country sells out to the Chinese; we have an open trade agree with the South Africans but you can’t get a SA raisin into the US because domestic raisins growers have an inferior product and they petition customs to hold up shipments until they rot; Michigan fruit co-op’s are allowed to harvest and dump cherries in high harvest years into roadside ditches to rot and still receive subsidies because we are stupid. Our trade laws and protectionism is screwed up on both sides of the fence, and if you want specific examples I can give them to you. I have been adversely affected detrimentally from all named. Oh…I forgot to mention sugar.

          • WUSRPH

            Because of our subsidies we spend the smallest percent of our incomes on food. But you and the DONALD want to change that?

          • John Johnson

            Absolutely.

          • WUSRPH

            You seriously mean that you want to raise the cost of food for all Americans? Talk about hurting those who supposedly elected him.

          • John Johnson

            Not if incomes rise; not if the economy gets stronger; not if more are employed in decent jobs.

          • BCinBCS

            And those “decent jobs” will be raising $10.00 tomatoes.

    • robintexas

      Only if you believe one of the most Anti-Trump, Anti-Conservative, anti-Republican, ultra-Liberal rags in the new industry. The New York times long ago lost it’s luster of reporting “All the News that’s Fit to Print”, and now only reports “All the Fake News we can Print”.

      That leftist, bastion if progressive-liberal propaganda wouldn’t print anything good or nice about Trump if he balanced the budget, gave every American 1 million dollars, and healed the sick…

      Nope; they’d report it as:

      Trump threaten Americans future by using questionable methods to cook the federal books.

      Trump oversteps presidential powers and suspiciously spreads funds from unknown source.

      Trump suspected of witchcraft and wizardry as he makes it look as if sick people get better. Most fear that without receiving proper medical care their loved one will perish.

      Despite the claims of those in the North East and on the West Coast, the people in the rest of the country is larger and has as many or more people than liberal land. (Yes fly-over country really is much larger than California, New York, Connecticut, Massachusetts and New Jersey)

      NO Trump voter has any remorse or regrets over voting for him. The opposite is true. We Trump voters are proud and pleased that he is fulfilling his campaign promises. Especially that he isn’t wasting any time doing so either. We want respect for our countries law once again. Control over the immigration process, religious freedoms to be not just allowed, but promoted and protected. Justice to be equally applied to everyone. Elites, politicians, and celebrities should NOT be getting preferential treatment.

      Propaganda will not work anymore.

      • SpiritofPearl

        As a former midwesterner, I can assure that people in the rest of the country “is bigger than liberal land.” Much bigger!

        Regurgitation of Breitbart talking points . . .

        Blocking you. Not the time.

        Off to do an incantation to the full moon for positive healing of your mind . . .

        (By the way those “big states” don’t have as many people as the “liberal states.”

        • John Johnson

          For those interested, here’s a map of who voted where and how, and a WaPo piece on how the Dem’s could lose another 9 congressional seats in 2018 in Dem areas that are turning Red. This next year is going to be a hoot.

          P.S. We feed the world. Farmers are going to do just fine. We will pay more for avocados and winter fruit, but so be it. The country will be stronger, and more people will have jobs and be able to help increase demand and consumer spending. That’s my take.
          https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-fix/wp/2017/02/11/why-democrats-cant-just-obstruct-their-way-back-into-power/?utm_term=.bff268bbfe60&wpisrc=nl_evening&wpmm=1

          • robintexas

            Yes, the FACT that matters is that there are 3141 counties in the United States… Hillary won only 57 of them, Donald Trump won 3,084…. That gave him a stunning victory, as we elect presidents by Electoral votes so that every part of the country has a voice, and has a say in how the country is run and by whom.

            By landmass, states, counties and precincts Trump won by a huge margin… And any way you look at it the landmass of the Trump voters is considerably larger than the landmass of the Clinton voters. I stand by my statement that what many consider as “fly-over country” is much much larger than liberal-land.

            Now if we could just get the networks to get out of New York (or at least a couple of them) and into places where some conservatives live, they might actually get a clue as to what the rest of the country is thinking. But instead they are stuck in liberal-land, seldom venture out, and only talk to other liberals… THAT is why they didn’t see a Trump victory coming, even though all the signs were there. It is also why they continually fail to understand what is going on. How can you report on something you don’t even realize exists?…

            The one thing this election made clear, we now know who the real haters are, we see the bigotry and intolerance of the left. We see who actually wants to curtail freedom and we see who resorts to violence and other fascist tactics…. But then history shows that socialists pretty much always do.

          • John Johnson

            Yep…the Dem’s think that obstructionism will work for them and the plethora of negative, slanted, blown out of proportion stuff will help get them there. My prediction is that they will lose more congressional seats next year. This might bring on mass suicides.

          • WUSRPH

            That strategy sure worked forr Trump so the Dems thought they should try it.

          • John Johnson

            Here’s the difference…the people who elected Trump had an agenda and specific wants; the ones raising Cain now are just protesting because Trump is giving us what we asked for.

          • WUSRPH

            Not so. They are protesting in defence of what they view as best for America and the world. They have a goal of saving the nation.

          • John Johnson

            Let’s see…our guy is President. He was elected by Repub’s, some Indies, and some disheartened Dem’s who wanted change. He is initiating change and you losers don’t get it. You seem to have no plan other than protest and insurrection. So be it. Goodbye to another bunch of Dem spots in 2018.

          • WUSRPH

            All of that will depend on how much or how little he screws up by then. If he proves unable to deliver both he and the GOP could lose blg. As you put it, wait and see.

          • John Johnson

            With more of what wasn’t working after decades of unkept promises? That’s what Hillary offered.

          • WUSRPH

            More than 100 months of continuous economic growth and job growth….a modern record….something seemed to be going right…..but your hate is so strong Christ could declare Obama to be a Saint and you’d immediately become an atheist.

          • John Johnson

            Geeez…someone should have told those Dem’s in Michigan and Ohio and Pennsylvania who helped elect Trump what great shape we are in.

          • BCinBCS

            JJ expounded: “…the people who elected Trump had an agenda and specific wants; the ones raising Cain now are just protesting…

            Well bless your heart.

          • BCinBCS

            Mass suicide?

            You are the true believer who is fully vested in Comrade Trump/Bannon. I’m more worried about you and my radically conservative friends than in those of us who oppose The Fascist.

          • José

            “By landmass…Trump won.”

            Just too funny! You think that empty fields should get a vote but not people. Just wow.

            “We the acres of the United States…” Nope, that ain’t gonna work.

          • BCinBCS

            robintexas wrote: “By landmass, states, counties and precincts Trump won by a huge margin…

            It’s too bad that the President doesn’t represent land but, instead, people. I would remind you that in those 3,084 counties that voted for Comrade Trump/Bannon were fewer voter than in the 57 counties that voted for Hillary – by almost 3,000,000 votes.

            As Leon Friedman reported: “Under the electoral college structure, smaller states have enormous political leverage. Wyoming has a population of 584,153 and has three electoral votes, which means that each Wyoming elector represents 194,717 voters. California has a population of 38,800,000 and has 55 electoral votes so each elector represents 705,454 voters. So each vote in Wyoming is worth 3.6 times more than each vote in California. Other smaller states such as Rhode Island, Montana, North and South Dakota, Nebraska and Idaho also have exalted political power.

            In six presidential elections, a President has been elected despite losing the popular vote, twice by the GOP in the last three Presidents.

            We elect by electoral votes because of slavery and because our Founding Fathers did not trust democracy.

            You man has no mandate.

          • José

            Loving County is one of those places that impresses RT so much. Tiny Hands won there with a whopping 89% of the vote! There was a grand total of 64 voters in the entire county and 57 picked him. Contrast that with Harris County where Clinton eked out a much smaller majority, about 54% of the electorate. In other words she beat Trump by “only” 160,000. But in RT’s world those two are about the same since counties are counties.

          • WUSRPH

            By votes he LOST by 2.9 million…….

          • WUSRPH

            Let’s see the map of the GOP districts including at least two in Texas that are turning blue.

          • John Johnson

            Another one of your wild prognostications?

          • WUSRPH

            Nope. Just looking at the numbers. It is going to be harder and harder to gerrymand districts in future years. The GOP. will probably be able to keep its margin because Texas should get at least two more seats in 2021, but it cannot keep the Dems pick up a couple.

      • John Johnson

        Robintexas, Spirit of Pearl is an angry, old woman from Indiana who once got herself kicked off this site for getting hateful, nasty and personal without adding anything to the conversation. She came back as an ostrich. She pulls her head out of the sand long enough to post and if she reads anything that criticizes her radical liberal lean, sticks it back in again. Please feel free to go ahead comment on her goofy comments. She won’t get them since she blocked you and will no longer see your posts on her feed, but the rest of us will. She thinks covering her eyes and plugging her ears will make the boogieman go away.

      • BCinBCS

        robintexas claimed: “Despite the claims of those in the North East and on the West Coast, the people in the rest of the country is larger and has as many or more people than liberal land.

        I know that “facts” today are anything that conservatives and Comrade Trump/Bannon choose them to be but let’s look at what the rest of the world considers facts:

        (i) Although whites make up only 62% of the population of the U.S, they accounted for 71% of the votes in the last election and 57% of them voted for Comrade Trump/Bannon;

        (ii) White evangelicals comprise the largest block of whites at 26% and accounted for 37% of all white voters who voted last election;

        (iii) Despite being at a high of more than 25% of the U.S. population in 1996 evangelicals have dropped to around 18% now;

        (iv) White evangelicals voter turn-out in 2016 was over an astonishing 82%;

        (v) Non-evangelical whites are breaking Democratic by about 50% versus Republican by about 40%;

        The white evangelical vote is maxed out, more whites are voting Democratic and minorities are voting overwhelmingly Democratic.

        Republicans successfully rode the evangelical horse for all that it was worth but there is nothing more to be gotten there. This is why the Republicans have lost six of the last seven popular votes, the last by almost 3 million. As Ken Miller described it, the election of Comrade Trump/Bannon was a merely a “dead cat bounce”.

        • robintexas

          Someone has been reading propaganda websites…..

          • BCinBCS

            Yaaa, keep drinking that Kool-aid.

            Please point out specifically where what I wrote is incorrect.

          • WUSRPH

            There appear to be 2.9 million more voters in liberal areas.

      • BCinBCS

        robintexas proclaimed: “NO Trump voter has any remorse or regrets over voting for him.

        That may be true but as far as the rest of Americans are concerned Comrade Trump/Bannon isn’t winning too many hearts and minds. His Gallop poll disapproval rating has climbed to 55%.

        https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/f198ebdfafb7893b6abfef52d0ddd15012df52fb8482a19aae7111319e138036.png

  • SpiritofPearl

    Spent some time at lawfareblog recently – “malevolence tempered by incompetence”:

    https://lawfareblog.com/malevolence-tempered-incompetence-trumps-horrifying-executive-order-refugees-and-visas

  • jadedhaven

    I’m tired of the Trump 24/7 discussion on these threads. There are many other interesting things going on in the world and some very important items up for discussion in our current state legislature.

    • donuthin2

      Do as many others do and go off thread and speak of them. Maybe you will generate an interesting conversation.

      • WUSRPH

        We have talked about sanctuary cities, school choice and bathrooms so far and they are talking about abortion on Wednesday. So far all this has been in the senate where Patrick likes this kind of red meat stuff.

        • John Johnson

          Meanwhile, the House goes about their orderly business without all the red meat issue blather.

          • WUSRPH

            You give the house too much credit. Actually it has done virtually nothlng and just appoinnted committees late last week. It will get around to some red meat later.

    • WUSRPH

      I hope we can switch more on the lege. but it has not gotten far enough along yet.

  • John Bernard Books

    Is Obama mentally ill?
    “In what’s shaping up to be a highly unusual post-presidency, Obama isn’t just staying behind in Washington. He’s working behind the scenes to set up what will effectively be a shadow government to not only protect his threatened legacy, but to sabotage the incoming administration and its popular “America First” agenda.”
    http://nypost.com/2017/02/11/how-obama-is-scheming-to-sabotage-trumps-presidency/

    This bozo isn’t most presidents, he intends to let everyone know, just in case there is one who doesn’t know how big of loser he really is….

    • John Johnson

      He is qualified to be a “community organizer”. Someone writes a speech and he delivers it. He fits this role well, but he was the WPE.

      • WUSRPH

        When it comes to the WPE, wait and see. Trump is well on the way to taking the title.

        • John Johnson

          Projecting again? You are not good at it. “…well on way”??? What is it that he has done that is going to take us to ruin?

          • WUSRPH

            Wait and see.

          • John Johnson

            I am good at that…you, not so much. I never cussed the WPE over what I thought was coming; I waited until after the damage was tallied.

          • WUSRPH

            Take a look at this week’s The Economist. It has both a leader and an article on Trump and Russia that should disturb anyone who still believes that America is some place special—which you and Trump clearly do not.

  • John Bernard Books

    Dems pick teachers Union over children….
    “But the necessity of Pence’s vote reflected another kind of history, too: The decision by all Senate Democrats to reject DeVos marked a new low for the flailing party.
    Democrats claim to stand for the poor, immigrants and nonwhites. Yet given a chance to actually support someone who is dedicated to improving education for all America’s children, especially those trapped in failing urban schools, the Dems said no, hell no.
    Joined by two Republicans, they stood in the schoolhouse door to block vital change, casting their lot with teachers unions that fear reform the way a vampire fears garlic.”
    http://nypost.com/2017/02/08/the-democratic-party-has-lost-its-mind-and-its-soul/

    Is the Dem party the party of the mentally ill or just stupid….

    • John Johnson

      Why didn’t Obama and his wife stay at home and fix Chicago public school system? Think they would ever put their daughters in that violent, unproductive quagmire? Teachers that don’t know giddy up from siccum, demand, through their state union, extraordinary pay. Throw in the third world like murder rates and it makes one wonder why we don’t give northern Illinois to the Canadians.

  • John Bernard Books

    Can bureaucrats do jobs that require thinking…
    “Only 20 percent of government employees do strategic, cognitive work that requires human thinking —”
    http://hotair.com/archives/2017/02/11/automation-can-replace-bureaucrats-and-save-taxpayers-money/

    The breaucrats main task is telling us we can’t do something and doing it in an inefficient condescending manner….

  • John Bernard Books

    The Noo York Times is astute….
    “Federal workers are more likely to be Democrats, according to surveys.”
    https://www.nytimes.com/2017/02/11/us/politics/a-sense-of-dread-for-civil-servants-shaken-by-trump-transition.html?_r=0

    the gravy train is over dems……

  • John Bernard Books

    The game is over…
    ” “The White House has provided enormous evidence with respect to voter fraud, with respect to people being registered in more than one state. Dead people voting, non-citizens being registered to vote. George, it is a fact and you will not deny it that are massive numbers of non-citizens in this country who are registered to vote.””
    http://www.breitbart.com/video/2017/02/12/miller-provided-enormous-evidence-voter-fraud/?utm_source=facebook&utm_medium=social

    The fat lady has sung….

    • pwt7925

      Breitbart=Fake News on steroids.

      • John Bernard Books

        prove it

  • BCinBCS

    And the beat lie goes on,
    and the beat lie goes on…

    It’s not a secret that Comrade Trump/Bannon lies and it’s not a secret that his administration lies. In case you are keeping track, the latest couple of whoppers have come from Stephen Miller, senior political advisor to the presidents. He sat in front of George Stephanopoulos on his Sunday morning show and claimed that Comrade Trump’s allegation that he lost the election in New Hampshire was because thousands of illegal voters were bussed in from Massachusetts.

    They had to side-line Kelleyanne Conway because she could not adequately defend Comrade Trump/Bannon’s bald face lies with her statements of “alternative facts”, her support of his immigration policy that sees terrorists entering the U.S. by the plane load by reminding everyone of the Bowling Green massacre and her infomercial fir Ivanka Trump’s clothing line. Now The Comrade has substituted Miller, I guess hoping that a fresh face will be believed. To true believers I’m sure that it worked, they will believe anything but for the rest of us, well, it’s just sad and pathetic.

    • SpiritofPearl

      Miller is more like The Grim Reaper than a “fresh face.”

  • John Bernard Books

    9th Circus having second thoughts…the Chief Judge issues order to reconsider?
    https://twitter.com/chrisgeidner/status/830191036609789953/photo/1

  • John Bernard Books

    Are dems racist or stupid…
    “whiteness is not humxness,” the statement begins. “infact, white skin is sub-humxn.” The post goes on to present a genetics-based argument centred on melanin and enzyme.
    “white ppl are recessive genetic defects. this is factual,” the post reads towards the end. “white ppl need white supremacy as a mechanism to protect their survival as a people because all they can do is produce themselves. black ppl simply through their dominant genes can literally wipe out the white race if we had the power to.””
    http://www.torontosun.com/2017/02/11/black-lives-matter-co-founder-appears-to-label-white-people-defects

    I’m going with both…

  • John Bernard Books

    Austin protesters beat up immigrant. Luis working in Austin on a visa was attacked by mob protesting ICE arrests…..
    http://www.fox26houston.com/news/235377409-story

  • WUSRPH

    Did you see that diners in Trump’s club overheard a top secret discussion about North Koreas’ missiles because he has yet to learn how to be president?

    • BCinBCS

      I’ve read multiple accounts that the intelligence agencies are not providing him with top secret information because they do not trust him or his people.

    • SpiritofPearl

      Yeah, and there were unsecured cell phones in abundance. Amateur hour at the WH!

      • John Johnson

        Pearl…the epitome of biased, ignorant commentary.

        • WUSRPH

          Actually, one of the guests posted cell phone pictures of the entire episode…..Seems that they could all be clearly seen…..These kinds of talks are usually conducted in secured bug proof rooms….A special squad of technicians follows the president around to set up such a space when needed……As it was Saturday night….but Trump didn’t even think about the possible danger of being bugged or electronically spied upon…..He still thinks he is selling water front lots in a desert development to suckers.

          • John Johnson

            You second guessing bozo…he received a phone call advising him of a Korean missile launch at his table, much in the same manner Bush had World Trade Center info whispered in his with the cameras rolling.

            Here’s what the guy taking the pics had to say about it:
            “DeAgazio told the Post that, after Trump and Abe had spoken for a few minutes, they left the open terrace and spent about 10 minutes in private before conducting a joint press conference at about 10:30 p.m. Eastern time.”

            Much ado about nothing, Professor. You and your group are now virtually screeching about everything. It grows old.

          • BCinBCS

            From CNN

            Trump took the call on a mobile phone at his table, which was set squarely in the middle of the private club’s dining area.

            As Mar-a-Lago’s wealthy members looked on from their tables, and with a keyboard player crooning in the background, Trump and Abe’s evening meal quickly morphed into a strategy session, the decision-making on full view to fellow diners, who described it in detail to CNN.
            ….
            Trump’s National Security Adviser Michael Flynn and chief strategist Steve Bannon left their seats to huddle closer to Trump as documents were produced and phone calls were placed to officials in Washington and Tokyo.

            The patio was lit only with candles and moonlight, so aides used the camera lights on their phones to help the stone-faced Trump and Abe read through the documents.

            Even as a flurry of advisers and translators descended upon the table carrying papers and phones for their bosses to consult, dinner itself proceeded apace. Waiters cleared the wedge salads and brought along the main course as Trump and Abe continued consulting with aides.

            Oh, and just think, if any of the phones that Comrade Trump/Bannon’s aides were using to light the paperwork are compromised, their actions made it even easier for the hackers to read what was on the papers.

            http://www.cnn.com/2017/02/12/politics/trump-shinzo-abe-mar-a-lago-north-korea/index.html

          • John Johnson

            Why don’t you reduce this down to what it is instead of buying into something more? The Korean’s conducted a missle test. He was advised at his table. He was shown a satellite image and the info was shared with Abe. They then moved inside to a private area for about 10 minutes and then returned to their table. What vital national interest secrets were compromised? The news of the test was broadcast almost immediately to the public. Much ado about nothing…manufactured crisis…fuel for you teeth gnashers.

          • Gunslinger

            The funny thing is this is exactly what Trump likes. He wants his private club diners to see him doing this. National security will have to take a number when it comes to stroking Trump’s ego. What’s the good of being president if you can’t impress the VIPs with it?

          • WUSRPH

            And remember all those aliens he keeps hiring at the club…Was one of them part of the wait staff? Sounds like a good place to put an agent to me.,

      • BCinBCS

        But an unsecured cell phone can never be as bad as a private e-mail server…(just ask the MSM).
        /s

        • SpiritofPearl

          Nah. Just ask Booksie.

          • BCinBCS

            I have absolutely no idea what JBB is up to. I blocked him and haven’t read him, had to correct him or been bothered by him since.

          • SpiritofPearl

            Most other BB readers have done the same. I know his MO – lots of frenzied posts – without reading them.

    • John Johnson

      “Top secret???” If Trump said “North Korean missile” at his table, is it top secret?

      • WUSRPH

        It is when you are receiving an urgent intelligence briefing on something that had just happened.

        • John Johnson

          Hahaha. Someone is whispering in his ear that the Koreans had launched a missile at his dinner table. Earth shattering. He mentions it to the Japanese Prime Minister. Earth shattering. US secrets exposed!

          • WUSRPH

            It would have been safe if that was all that hhappened. You just cannot accept that he does stupid things.

          • John Johnson

            Who told you what happened? Got it on vid? You are a bait taker, just like your protege. If the stinkbait fits your agenda, you swallow the hook. Who reported it? Who initiated the rumor? Got any names? Any proof?

          • BCinBCS

            And who told you, what are their names, where is your vid and where is your proof that a discussion did not take place? You just mindlessly keep drinking the Kool-aid.

          • John Johnson

            Seen the pics? I have? Seen the diner’s pics and Twitter post taken from inside of happenings on the restaurant deck? I have. Tell me difference in this and Bush’s being advised in classroom.

          • WUSRPH

            Bush was being advised at a time of national crisis berore a group of children who could not understand what was happenig. Trump was talking about secrets virtually i n public. You are much too defensive when he does something stupid which is much too often.

          • John Johnson

            Are you aware that Trump’s group was seated at the outside seating area and the “public” was inside. No “public” diner heard anything that was said. Pics were taken through windows of Trump receiving a phone call. That was it. Furthermore, your delineation of a public classroom and a segregated dining area being somehow different is ignorant. I know it; you know it.

      • BCinBCS

        JJ, keep on making excuses. It’s humorous (and a little pathetic).

  • John Bernard Books

    Can dems please keep it up?
    “Two dozen California companies have said they are tired of the business-bashing in Sacramento, along with the high taxes — and they are now threatening to leave the state.
    The day after Proposition 30 passed, triggering $6 billion in new annual taxes, Arizona launched a campaign to lure some of California’s top companies.”
    http://www.kcra.com/article/two-dozen-companies-commit-to-leaving-california-1/6402348

    idiots….

  • SpiritofPearl
    • John Johnson

      One of Obama’s golf rounds with Tiger Woods cost taxpayers a reported $4M. Here’s a good piece on the subject:
      http://thehill.com/homenews/administration/104497-white-house-defends-obamas-golf-outings

      • BCinBCS

        Nowhere in that article does it claim that Obama’s golfing cost taxpayers $4M.

        • John Bernard Books

          Just one ex-prez Obama’s golf outing costs the tax payers that much
          “An audit by the Government Accountability Office that was reported Wednesday revealed that a 2013 golf trip taken by President Obama to play with Tiger Woods in Florida cost taxpayers $3.6 million dollars.”
          http://www.foxsports.com/golf/story/a-golf-outing-for-president-obama-and-tiger-woods-cost-taxpayers-3-6-million-102716

          Just one…..wow

        • José

          And it’s even worse. The trips to Mar-a-Lago not only cost us, the taxpayers, a lot of dough, but that cash goes straight into the pockets of the Looter in Chief.

        • John Johnson
          • BCinBCS

            From the ABC News article: “These costs consisted of the operating expenses of Air Force One, supporting aircraft, and U.S. Coast Guard small boats, as well as travel expenses, which include per diem commercial airfare and rental cars for Defense Department and Department of Homeland Security personnel supporting the trip, according to the report.

            Those expenses are incurred every time the President goes anywhere whether it is to conduct official business, meet a person, go on a campaign trip (reimbursed by the political party at commercial airliner rates), attend a funeral or play golf.

            Those expenses are not unique to Obama and they are also the same for Comrade Trump/Bannon.

            I’m not holding my breath waiting for you to complain about Comrade Trump/Bannon running up the same charges or for the double-duty Secret Service charge for protecting the President in Washington, D.C. and the First Lady in New York.

    • SpiritofPearl

      “This user is blocked.”

    • donuthin2

      I like it better when he is golfing than when he is governing.

      • SpiritofPearl

        Maybe his golf game is better than his governing skills.

  • John Bernard Books

    We need this now….
    “Tennessee Bill Gives People Who Run over Protesters Blocking Traffic Immunity”
    http://www.jookos.com/2017/02/09/tennessee-bill-gives-people-run-protesters-blocking-traffic-immunity/

    Bill what did you give Monica for Valentine’s Day?

  • WUSRPH

    Flynn gone, how many more to follow. It appears it is okay to lie to the public but not to Pence.

  • WUSRPH

    Flynn gone. How many more to go? It appears it is okay to lie to the public but not to embarass Pence.

    • SpiritofPearl

      A lone sacrificial lamb or the first domino?

      “What did the president know and when did he know it?”

      • WUSRPH

        For. Trump the question will be: what did the president not know and why did he not know it?

        • SpiritofPearl

          On another note, have you ever seen Arabic signs along the border? I’ve been to Big Bend a couple of times, but saw none. Into the Twilight Zone . . .

          http://www.cnn.com/2016/12/08/politics/kfile-michael-flynn-arabic-signs-on-border/

          • José

            Flynn said “It’s unbelievable.” I agree.

        • John Johnson

          Who are the Obama malcontent holdovers who are leaking info?

          • BCinBCS

            When all other excuses fail, use projection.

          • WUSRPH

            Good question…Better one: Why is there so much to leak?

      • SpiritofPearl
        • BCinBCS

          Michael Flynn and his son have both been fired from the Comrade Trump/Bannon administration.

          Comrade Trump/Bannon hires “only the best” people. Apparently everyone except The Comrade knew that the Flynns were nut-jobs.

          From the WaPo article:

          He added that the president had an “instinctive” belief that Flynn had not broken any laws, which was later “confirmed” by an inquiry led by the White House Counsel’s Office.

          Well that makes me feel all warm and fuzzy about the competence of the WH Counsel.

          It’s going to be a long four years.

          • SpiritofPearl

            Perhaps less than four years . . .

      • WUSRPH

        A sacrificial lamb for now…..but others are likely to follow as the months go by…..Bannon plays the role of Martin Bormann fairly well and he will work to prune out any that challenge his influence and control on what information and who reaches Trump. They have taken Kellyanne Conway to the woodshed already…..but she is certain to continue to embarrass the Administration with “alternate facts” and non-existent massacres till Bannon can slip the knife to her too. A very bloody world of back-biting and second guessing appears to be what we can expect. Meanwhile those poor smucks who took Cabinet posts thinking they would have the power to do something will be playing catch up to the tweets and trying to run a government……

        BYW have you noticed that when he actually meets the Japanese and his aides talk to people like the South Koreans how they seem to have forgotten all the nasty things he said about them earlier? I guess he’s kind of playing “make up” for his prior diplomatic boo-boos. Not a word about how Japan and South Korea aren’t paying us enough…..and we now accept the “one China policy”…..one after another he has dropped his prior positions…..Maybe there is hope yet.

        • SpiritofPearl

          There’s what he sells to the Breitbart Bubbas and then there’s what he sells to the adults in the room.

    • BCinBCS

      Life is so unfair for Flynn – he tells one lie and gets fired while Comrade Trump/Bannon tells hundreds of lies and gets elected.

      TPM states how Republicans will defend their people no matter what. (The old: “That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.”)
      (emphasis is mine)

      An important point to note. Ret. Gen. Michael Flynn just resigned amidst a counter-intelligence investigation into, among other things, his communications with the Russian Ambassador to the United States. But only three or four hours before Flynn resigned, the Chairman of the House Intelligence Committee (House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence), Devin Nunes, said there was no problem and it was just the President’s enemies (“the swamp” in his words) making trouble. “It just seems like there’s a lot of nothing here,” Nunes told Bloomberg’s Steven Dennis.

      This is only a particularly embarrassing illustration of a larger problem. The Republican Congress has no interest in any oversight of the Trump administration. None. Sure, opposing parties usually scrutinize administrations more aggressively. But it’s rare to have this level of complete refusal. Again, only three or four hours before Flynn resigned in disgrace, Nunes put forward an aggressive defense of Flynn and said nothing was wrong at all.

      http://talkingpointsmemo.com/edblog/that-s-a-big-problem

      • John Johnson

        Maybe they will put together a video of 13 minutes of lies coming out of his mouth like they did Hillary.

        • BCinBCS

          It would have to be much longer than 13 minutes!

          This is amazing, now Comrade Trump/Bannon is blaming his problems on Hillary. In a tweet this morning, he wrote that “This Russian connection non-sense is merely an attempt to cover-up the many mistakes made in Hillary Clinton’s losing campaign“. He’s like a four year old blaming his sister after he broke the cookie jar.

          How immature. How pathetic. How sad.

          • John Johnson

            No blame. He didn’t break it. He’s trying to glue it back together.

          • BCinBCS

            Comrade Trump/Bannon, according to the White House, was told about Flynn’s conversation with the Russians on January 26th by the Acting Attorney General. Comrade Trump/Bannon said and did nothing despite the Justice Department warning that Flynn may have opened himself to blackmail. It wasn’t until this sorry state of affairs hit the press that The Comrade asked for Flynn’s resignation. Despite the incredible irony that Comrade Trump /Bannon had to fire Flynn for lying, it appears that The Comrade was content to allow someone who could be blackmailed to remain in office.

            And, of course, now that it has become public, he is trying to divert attention from his fiasco by trying to blame it on leakers and Hillary Clinton.

            Sad, so sad.

          • WUSRPH

            To have done something about it when they “learned” (assuming they did not know before the calls) would have been to admit what they were denying…..They took a gamble that it could be kept quiet and that the Russians would not leak it because they had too much to gain from Trump to make him angry. The Trumptarians would have kept it under wraps forever if they could, but Pence got mad when he found out that Flynn lied to the VP and let him make false statements to the public. Pence must have been unwilling to accept it as “a good solider” and probably demanded action.

          • WUSRPH

            The big question now is whether Flynn will be a good solider and go to his political/public grave with his reputation destroyed forever or will he fight back and tell what he knows?
            The Administration will have to worry about this possibility for some time to come.

          • John Johnson

            I hope they call him before an investigating committee in order to put an end to all this. What is the worst scenario you envision coming out of anything he might say?

          • WUSRPH

            Pure speculation but: I expect that Flynn will go quietly into the dark in the hope that his views, if not his presence, will continue to have some effect on policy.

            Although the GOP clearly has some concerns, it will take a lot more of this kind of fiasco and a lot more “evidence” of some sort of closer relationship between the Trump campaign and the Russian interference in our domestic policies before the leadership will be willing to conduct anything but the most surface inquiries, much less a full-fledged investigation. Remember how long it took and how much had to be learned before the Congress finally got involved in looking into Nixon’s malfeasance.

            However, should Flynn prove to be more a John Dean than a Gordon Liddy all hell could break loose. If he were to say that he had been in close touch with the Russians throughout the campaign and knew, at least in general terms, what they were up to and, most importantly, that Trump knew about it….we could well have a Senate Russiagate Committee. This could paralyze Washington for many months.

            Trump based much of his attraction on being a man who “tells it like it is”….and, despite all the evidence to the contrary, a large part of his supporters still believe it is all lies by his enemies and the liberals. Should he loose their faith, he will be unable to function.

            Absent evidence that there was a deal with the Russians, Trump could probably survive to serve out his term, but he would be so weakened that he would have as little influence on events as Buchannan had on events in 1860-61. The only concern would be what would an angry, frustrated Trump do to express his anger.
            I could well be—and probably am–wrong…but at least that’s the “worst scenario” I see at this time.

          • WUSRPH

            One “good” result of all of this is that it is now going to be very hard for Trump to sell some “grand deal” with the Russians. That part of his plan—if he had one—is probably “on hold” for many months to come, if not for this term.

          • John Johnson

            He has made some goofy choices. This Carl’s burger guy was one of them…the Sec of Education woman another, but as you have said, he, and many he has brought in to “consult” know nothing about the minutiae of filling slots and are starting from groun zero. If the hiccups turn into uncontrollable spasms, I don’t think Trump will hesitate to show them the door. Look how many campaign managers he went through.

            If he listens to Pence, he will be OK…if he allows Bannon and Priebus to continue to whisper in his ear, it will be a long, rocky road. That’s my take.

            I am a Trump supporter, but only because the other choice was not palatable to me. I have no problem with Pence. If Trump was removed from office, I would shed no tears, but I can only imagine how millions of true believers would handle this scenario.

            I am going to stick with him until he gets his sea legs in under him, or until he makes some totally stupid moves like Obama did.

          • John Johnson

            If Trump knew about Russian interference and was condoning it, he should be impeached. If there is concrete evidence from someone other than an unnamed source, or, as you suggest, maybe Flynn himself, it needs to be brought to light asap.

            I just don’t think there is any there there, but we need to get it resolved and all questions answered, including these unsubstantiated “leaks” that are attributed to our intelligence community. This has got to stop.

          • WUSRPH

            I think this is getting more and more like the Nixon treason situation in 1968 where it was quietly “agreed” (often with winks and nods) to let it go for the best interests of the country. Very few people really want to put this country thru another impeachment trial…..even those of us who must distrust Trump and want him gone should step back and consider the outcome of such an action. I’d rather have a weakened politically castrated Trump than see the country torn apart between those who think he can do no good and those who think he is some sort of the second coming.

          • BCinBCS

            I have only one question: Are you tired of winning so much yet?

          • John Johnson

            You are speculating again. You aren’t very good at it. Why not bite your tongue and clench your fists until you have something concrete and verifiable to comment on?

          • John Johnson

            Two separate things:
            1. If you believe Spicer, they were told about it and passed on to the Justice Dept for evaluation from a legal standpoint and went about getting to the truth of the matter. When Flynn continued to use the “I don’t remember” excuse, he was asked to resign. Firing him on the spot after receiving info from an intelligence community that he no longer implicitly trusts would have been a knee jerk reaction.
            2. Continued leaks from yet unnamed sources…most of whom, I speculate, were shown the door after inauguration, and some malinger’ers still on staff, is troubling. It is obviously going to take time to show these the door and tighten up lips. Indictments might be in order for these morons.

            I am all for a thorough investigation with the chips falling where they may.

          • BCinBCS

            Most of these leaks are coming from the White House. Those are not Obama’s people. Those leaks that are not coming from the WH come from career governmental workers who may or may not be Democrats but are very likely not Obama appointees.

          • WUSRPH

            Hillary ran a bad enough campaign to probably have lost anyway….but it sure did not help to have all that Russian aid for the other guy… We will never know just how much Putin and company affected the outcome of the election….From most accounts it started long before the election or his nomination with a concentrated campaign of posting rumors and false stories on social media. Clinton spent a good deal of her time fighting those off….This certainly hurt her…and aided to her unfavorable image. All of this helped Trump and hurt her.

            But. despite that, she still failed to campaign where she needed to (going after Arizona toward the end was a clear sign that they did not understand the situation in Michigan, etc.)…..She still lost them by close enough margins that a few tough speeches there clearly outlining the steps she would take might have made the difference. It was all there in her platform and position statements, but never presented in terms that would move or reassure the voters. She was clearly too much of a policy wonk and not enough of a politician.

            Of course, “what if” and “if only” are two of the most useless sayings in the English language. It didn’t happen and now we have to live with Trump and hope he does not prove to be all we feared. So far, he’s not giving us much reason to hope for the better.

          • BCinBCS

            Don’t forget the boost that Comrade Trump/Bannon got fro FBI Director Comey.

  • John Bernard Books

    Can you recognize a liberal….
    “Despite Gov. Greg Abbott exhorting lawmakers not to loot the Economic Stabilization Fund to balance the budget, the new chairman of the House Appropriations Committee says he’s open to doing just that.”
    https://empowertexans.com/quicktakes/zerwas-open-looting-esf-pay-big-spending/
    and this gem…
    “The Pennsylvania Republican is currently at the center of high-stakes negotiations to enact the most sweeping overhaul of the Federal Aviation Administration in decades. The package could include changes to the nation’s air travel system, including the privatization of the air traffic control system. Airlines for America’s members — all of the nation’s largest airlines — have a major interest in the legislation.
    Shuster and Shelley Rubino, vice president for global government affairs for Airlines for America, have been romantically involved since last summer, according to multiple sources familiar with their relationship. Rubino, a former top House Democratic leadership aide, has been with the trade group since March 2012.”
    http://www.politico.com/story/2015/04/bill-shuster-admits-personal-relationship-with-lobbyist-117054

    We knew Rep Zerwas was a rino…..
    But Rep Shuster wants to give the Air Traffic Controllers back to the union after Prez Reagan broke their backs?
    “In the current era of polling among a largely dissatisfied electorate, the results of the survey are somewhat startling. The privatization question managed to receive 60% opposition even though it was phrased in a somewhat disingenuous way. The plan being put forth by Congressman Bill Shuster isn’t truly “privatization” so much as it would be the creation of a government supervised body primarily controlled by and benefiting the unions. Even so, this ideas isn’t sitting well with the voters.”
    http://hotair.com/archives/2017/02/14/poll-solid-majority-of-voters-oppose-turning-atc-over-to-unions/

    Democrats hiding as republicans……

  • John Bernard Books

    For all my dem friends who didn’t get a valentine:
    “If My Nose Was Running Money, I’d Blow it All ON You”

  • John Bernard Books

    Voters haven’t elected a dem to state wide office in over 20 years….here’s an example why not:
    “Although taxpayers within Houston ISD’s boundaries rejected a November ballot proposal to send $162 million to the state’s Robin Hood program, the Board of Trustees is asking voters for a do-over.”
    https://empowertexans.com/around-texas/hisd-taxpayers-vote-robin-hood/

    Robin Hood is a dem boondoggle to spread the wealth down a hole…

  • John Bernard Books

    Dem at MLK celebration gets caught on tape
    “Fouts, a Democrat, has denied making the statements, saying the recordings were engineered to sound like him. But audio experts disagree.
    In the latest batch of recordings, Fouts compared black people to chimpanzees.
    “Blacks do look like chimpanzees,” Fouts said. “I was watching this black woman with her daughter and they looked like two chimps.”
    http://motorcitymuckraker.com/2017/01/16/audio-mayor-fouts-compares-black-people-chimps-ridicules-women/

    I don’t have to make up stuff about dems….they are who they are…

  • WUSRPH

    No, more a comment on you overwhelming bias based on alternative facts.

    • John Johnson

      Simply another one of your opinions.

      • WUSRPH

        A fairly wide spread one, too.

        • John Johnson

          “…fairly wide spread…? Like they do manure, right? Like someone spreading bullshit? You are great at it.

          • WUSRPH

            but you believe the bs coming out of the Trump folks……I guess lying to the VP and the press secretary is okay with you.

  • John Bernard Books

    You have to love PRESIDENT Trump….
    Here he is hitting a solid gold driver
    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/6d8a4083522674476d65393bb9f3f21a2199e1f5786d83adb0e5a2c265f85991.jpg

  • John Bernard Books

    CIA bureaucrats took out Flynn….
    “New Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) said Tuesday that President-elect Donald Trump is “being really dumb” by taking on the intelligence community and its assessments on Russia’s cyber activities.
    “Let me tell you, you take on the intelligence community, they have six ways from Sunday at getting back at you,” Schumer told MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow.
    “So even for a practical, suposedly hard-nosed businessman, he’s being really dumb to do this.”
    Or, as the old rueful saying has it, “you’ve got to go along to get along.” This means that we the people had better acknowledge that the bureaucrats have turned into our masters, and the old expression “public servant” is as ironic as anything Orwell came up with. Schumer knows this and likes it, because the deep state wants a bigger, more powerful government, just as he does.

    http://www.americanthinker.com/blog/2017/02/cia_broke_the_law_to_take_out_its_critic_general_flynn.html#ixzz4YhlYaKwM
    Follow us: @AmericanThinker on Twitter | AmericanThinker on Facebook

    Are democrats traitors…..

  • jadedhaven

    Looks like my point was made on Trump talk.

    Here’s a regional story that might spark JJ’s interest. Dan Patrick wants to make it even harder to sue insurance companies over hail damage because he hates greedy lawyers.

    http://kxan.com/2017/02/14/hail-storm-bill-could-make-it-harder-to-sue-insurance-companies/

    • WUSRPH

      That is JJ’s favorite bill to scream about and claim that everyone has been bought….He’s consistent on that at least.

    • John Johnson

      Share emails with my state rep on this quite often. Posted state report on false claims by insurance companies and the TLR on Nextdoor app with 2200+ homeowners in my area. I like to concentrate on issues where legislators continue to allow all Texans, regardless of political persuasion, to get screwed by the hard lobbying Insurance and utility companies.

      • WUSRPH

        Has he said how he will vote or are you getting “appreciate and thanks” for your input?

        • John Johnson

          He gives me points to ponder. He told me yesterday that he had talked with Bonnen, who is authoring or sponsoring the bill, and had voiced concerns. Bonnen told him the bill was being rewritten to address some of the concerns.

          • WUSRPH

            When you have a bill as bad as this one from the start, it is almost impossible to “rewrite” if to make it acceptable. The only real amendment would be one that says “Strike everything below the enacting clause”…..that kills it outright. But they will try to make it “appear” less offensive to make it easier for people like your representative to vote for it and let him tell you that it is no longer that same bad bill you disliked so much. SOP. Standard operating procedure.

    • SpiritofPearl

      We’re in the middle of a constitutional crisis at the national level, but here’s a Texas topic to discuss:

      https://www.texastribune.org/2017/02/14/texas-foster-care-selling-sex/

      While the Lege spends time thinking of ways to harrass transgender children, they fail to address the shortcomings of CPS and the educational system.

  • WUSRPH

    A new definition of a LIE: To “inadvertently brief with incomplete information” (Gen. Michael Flynn)

    This Administration is giving us a new phrase to remember each week. “Alternative facts” was only the beginning of a long stream to come.

  • John Bernard Books

    Lock her up is coming….
    “The news that President Trump supports the investigation comes days after the Oversight Committee ordered James Comey, FBI Director, to release the contents of Hillary Clinton’s email server.”
    http://www.usanewsflash.com/congress-pursue-criminal-charges/

    Dems love to play hardball politics…PRESIDENT Trump an old dem does too…..

  • SpiritofPearl
    • John Johnson

      If I read the piece correctly, Flynn had formed relationships with the Russians and a hatred of Iran long before he had any contact or relationship with Trump. If both his, and Trump’s, longterm plan was/is to turn Russia into an ally in fighting Iran’s unstated, but tangible role, of promoting and funding worldwide Muslim terrorist activities, I happen to think that this is a good thing. The Russians suffer from the threat just as we do, if not more.

      Flynn’s mistake was in not simply telling the truth, when asked about his phone calls and expanded discussions with his Russian contacts. He got too big for his britches, overshot his appointment, and has suffered the consequences.
      He has been removed from the equation.

      If he sits in front of a congressional committee and says he was aware, and part of a Russian hacking effort to get Trump elected, Trump should be impeached. If not, we need to move on and chalk it up for what it is…another heroic figure who felt he had no bounds.

      This is my take.

      • BCinBCS

        Russia and Iran are natural allies because of their dislike of Sunni extremism. It’s a shame that past United States administrations treated Iran with such paternalism and contempt because their people have more in common with the people of the U.S. than any other Middle Eastern country except Israel. After becoming mad as hell and not willing to take it anymore, Iran went radical in its relationship with America and we reciprocated in kind. Now both countries have governments that see advantages with keeping the other as an enemy. It’s a win for the radicals of each government but a loss for the peoples of each country.

  • WUSRPH

    “Constant contact with Russia”—–what were they talking about? The weather?

    • SpiritofPearl

      Borscht.

  • John Bernard Books

    the kooks on the left really believe Russia hacked the election….hahaha

  • WUSRPH

    I suppose you saw that Ken Paxton is the first State AG in the country to file a brief in support of the Trump travel ban. He has clearly turned the attorney general’s office into a total political operation with less and less concern for his duties. Perhaps we should change the title from Attorney General to something that more accurately reflects his approach to the job….The sad part is that fewer and fewer people are going to be able to rely on his “opinions” as having any real legal basis.

    P.S. Who authorizes him to take such a political position as the official stand of the STATE OF TEXAS?

    • SpiritofPearl

      Abbott did that when he was AG.

      • WUSRPH

        For all his political shenanigans such as suing the Federal Govt. every day, I do not think people thought that Abbott’s daily activities as AG were as politicized as Paxton’s appear to be.

        • SpiritofPearl

          For those who are not native Texans, it’s ALL highly politicized. Cruz did this when he was solcitor general. “Every day I go to the office and sue Obama.”

          Waste of the taxpayers’ dollars . . .

    • John Johnson

      He is a flawed and totally inept AG. He rode the TP wave into office. The TP has weakened after Cruz managed, through words and actions, to turn off a big chunk of the base. This said, the true believers are still encouraged by Dunn’s $ through Empower Texans, and acolytes like Konni Burton and Jonathan Strickland. They still use Cruz sound bites and can’t seem to get specific when asked pointed questions. Stickland’s smaller base as a rep might keep him in office, but I predict that Burton’s day’s are numbered. She has managed to piss off every major corporation in Tarrant County and, in turn, all those employed by them. We shall see.

  • WUSRPH

    It will be interesting to see how they fix it. It is hard to make a cow chip into anything but a more attractive cow chip.

    • John Johnson

      Don’t disagree. One of the things I pointed out to him regarded the poor soles in Rowlette who went through a terrible tornado last year. Many are still not back in their homes. It seems that they bought policies which they thought covered replacement costs, only to find, post storm, that they bought one that paid on a depreciating scale. I told Krause that Bonnen needed to add an addendum which forces insurance companies to have in bold print on those type policies that they do not cover total replacement, insure that this is explained and checked off on, and initialed.

      • WUSRPH

        One way to do it would be to leave the right to sue for such damages unchanged, but put a tight cap on the attorney fees. That makes it unattractive for a lawyer to handle a case since he would have to bundle a whole bunch together into some sort of a class action to make any real money. That way they can claim they did not take a right away from the insured person…..but, of course, they would, at the same time, make that right virtually unenforcable. It could all be made to look even more like a “compromise” since the sponosr is from a hurricance prone area where there is more of the kind of damage. See, they could say in effect, he’s one of you and he’s for it. TLR is very, very good at the game.

        • John Johnson

          I have passed this post of yours on to him as well.

          The profit margins of Big Insurance in Texas are massive. They are not losing money and never have. Where we used to have tens of choices, the big’s have gobbled up the small’s, and we now have about three. They are in cahoots. The four major air carriers are in cahoots; the small number of health insurance companies are in cahoots.

          If you are totally into free market, get government out of it thinking, this is what you get. The next thing you know, we get rid of regulatory bodies like the USDA, since the Constitution doesn’t call for government intervention of this nature, and back to a “buyer beware” policy. Eat a tainted burger that kills your kid at Burger King, don’t ever go there again. In other words, we move to a Russian Roulette game when it comes to drugs, food, and the like. This is what people like Konni Burton and other’s are promoting if I read them right.

          • BCinBCS

            JJ, what are you drinking today? You’re making great sense. (Although I would argue with your statement that insurance profits are massive. They’re entirely adequate but not massive.)

            On the national level, the same thing is happening with health care. Republicans are, essentially, becoming libertarians who think that the free enterprise market can handle any problem using the method that you describe with your tainted hamburger example.

            What many conservatives do no understand is that a pure capitalistic economic system cannot work, just like a pure socialistic economic system cannot work. The sweet spot is a mixture of the two and that is where the conservative/liberal battle should be waged.

  • WUSRPH

    For jadedhaven:
    Today’s legislative events:
    Hearing in the Senate on more bills to control/limit/outlaw a woman’s right of choice. Did anyone watch and have any developments to report?
    Two senators–both Democrats from San Antonio—apparently forgot to report a total of $60,000 in contributions from the pro-“tort reform” folks. The big :”forgetter” was Sen. Menendez who had a major primary fight. He forgot $50,000. The other forgetful solon was Ureste. Both say they will file amended reports. As I understand it, as long as they file the new reports the only possible penalty is a fine.
    Anything else happening in the Lege. worth reporting?

    • John Johnson

      Thank you for the overview. As you know, going back to pre-Davis days, I railed against our local reps coming home bragging about balancing the budget when I knew they were using dedicated funds to do so in a contrived manner.

      Ramsey’s piece hit the nail on the head…the only problem is, people already reading it already knew it. The general Texas (national) population are ignorant and have no clue or desire to get “clued”. Therefore, they continue to get away with it.

      • BCinBCS

        …they continue to get away with it.

        Yup.

    • SpiritofPearl

      The “forgotten” donations are red herrings. Anti-choice legislators are engaging in performance art for the base.

      Women have gotten abortions for millenia. They always have and and they always will.

      Eight-three percent of Texas public schools teach “abstinence only” as the only form of sex education. No wonder Texas has the highest rate of teen pregnancy in the country!

  • jadedhaven

    Just read this someplace else, is it true…

    “The Texas Senate health & human services committee is debating new abortion laws right now, right this second.

    A women testifying against the 3 bills up for debate in the committee kept reading her testimony after the 2 minute timer beeped and she wouldn’t stop when prompted by Senator Schwertner (usually senators will say wrap it up and let you finish but Schwertner wasn’t having it) so he slammed the chairman’s gavel so hard that he just shattered the glass table top. Pieces of glass went flying, some hit Senater Huffines in the face.

    I’ve never seen anyone slam a gavel so hard.”

    • SpiritofPearl

      A little temper tantrum when that woman wouldn’t obey him . . .

  • jadedhaven

    I like WUSRPH and John Johnson very much. I think these two men are both pretty wonderful in their distinctive ways.

    • BCinBCS

      I agree with you jaded.

      Where are all of the other commenters who used to give their knowledge and opinions? Where is Beerman, Wessexmom, Jerry Pattterson, Wilson James, Shelly H., dpcesq, Gunslinger, Prescott, Kozmo and all the others who used to post here? How do we get them back?

      • donuthin2

        I think two things have pretty much killed the blog. First, the trolls like jbb and maybe a couple of others and the lack of attention from Tx Monthly. Burka was unique in his ability to introduce a subject that would bring in commenters with opinions on both sides of the issue. None since then have had that ability.

        • John Bernard Books

          I laugh at stupid…does that bother you?

        • SpiritofPearl

          You can now block those who annoy you.

      • Gunslinger

        I’m still here. I check daily for updates. This blog just needs more and varied content. Erica was pretty good at it until she left. RG is good, but I know he’s busy with other stuff. TM just needs to commit more resources to it. But then again, this is just a blog. So…I dunno. I’ll make due with whatever they give me.

    • John Bernard Books

      Here’s you answer…
      “On “Meet the Press”, Webb admitted that the Democratic Party has no ideas to offer, that it’s determined to destroy the Trump administration and — here’s the gaffe — that “the Democratic Party over the past five or six years has moved very far to the left.””
      http://www.freemarketcentral.com/post/5328/is-jim-webb-the-only-sane-democrat-left

      Why is it so hard to admit the dem party is now occupied by the kooks…

  • BCinBCS

    Pearl, JJ says that he agrees with you.

    I like this new JJ.
    (Did you finally get a full night’s sleep?)

    • SpiritofPearl

      Did he really? Thanks, JJ. Maybe there’s hope for you yet.

      • BCinBCS

        He’s been making a lot of sense in the last day or so, especially his observations of the craziness that is happening in the Texas state government.

        Why don’t you unblock him and give him another chance. You might find that you and he are in agreement when it comes to Abbott, Patrick, Paxton and the rest of the clown car.

        • SpiritofPearl

          “The last day or two”? If he makes some sense in a couple of weeks, I’ll reconsider.

          Hard to unblock through Disqus . . .

          • BCinBCS

            You’ll never know if he has changed unless you unblock him.

            To unblock:
            Click on your name at the beginning of any of your comments.
            In the new window, click “Edit Profile”.
            In the next window click on “Blocking”.
            Finally, click on “Unblock” to begin seeing blocked comments again.

          • SpiritofPearl

            You are a very kind person, but why should I do this?

          • BCinBCS

            JJ can go off of the rails when it come to his blind support of Comrade Trump/Bannon but he frequently makes sense on state and local issues as well as the occasional national issue and it’s important to be exposed to alternative ideas.

          • SpiritofPearl

            Doesn’t sound like he’s changed at all.

          • SpiritofPearl

            So I unblocked to look at his recent posts. Still the same old, same old ad hominem and insults. Don’t need it.

  • BCinBCS

    I agree with almost all of what you wrote but you cannot condemn WUSRPH and me because our experiences are different than yours. Just because they are different does not make them invalid.

  • John Bernard Books

    Another democrat under investigation….
    “Agents with the FBI and IRS are raiding the law offices of state Sen. Carlos Uresti, the San Antonio Democrat, Thursday morning.”
    http://www.mysanantonio.com/news/local/article/FBI-raids-state-Sen-Carlos-Uresti-s-San-Antonio-10937182.php?cmpid=twitter-desktop

    Will he give up his friend from San Antonio in a plea bargain…..

  • BCinBCS

    As most of you know by now, I am particularly interested in science and medicine, including health insurance and just like that friend who insists on showing you the latest addition to his stamp collection, I’m going to let you know the latest about Obamacare.

    The interesting thing about Obamacare is that the news is positive for keeping the program and positive for eliminating the program. Republicans have spent seven years and over 60 votes trying to eliminate the ACA and now that they have complete control of the government, they, like the dog that caught the car, don’t know what to do. The natural thing for them to do would be to drag their feet until they figured how to get themselves out of this jam but they are getting pressure from their own party. From The Daily Beast:

    Not even a full two months into the new Congress, Republicans have an Obamacare-sized problem on their hands, because party leaders need the Freedom Caucus’ votes to pass their agenda but the group has drawn its own red line in the sand demanding a full repeal of Obamacare as their price for being team players in the future.

    Many of the members of the group report they can’t support any bill short of the full Obamacare repeal Republicans sent directly to President Barack Obama’s veto pen in 2015. Rank and file conservatives now fear GOP leaders are slow walking the repeal effort in order to merely tweak it around the edges, instead of carrying through on their party’s promise to overhaul the law they formerly labeled a socialist takeover of the health care system.

    It’s gotten to the point where even Republicans are wary of Republican’s soaring promises on health care.

    ‘Something Republicans need to be concerned about is if we’re just going to replace Obamacare with Obamacare-lite, then it begs the question, ‘Were we just against Obamacare because it was proposed by Democrats?’” Rep. Raul Labrador (R-ID) told reporters. “If that’s our position then we’re very hypocritical because then we’re just taking a political position, not a policy based position.’

    ‘Frankly our base is going to leave the party because they’re not going to be happy with something that does exactly what Obamacare did before with a different name,’ he ominously warned.

    ‘Where we are today with a Republican Congress and a Republican White House we’re not passing messaging bills here. We are shooting live rounds,” MacArthur continued. “We’re doing things that have an immediate, specific impact on Americans lives, and I’m not interested in looking at votes in the past. I’m interested in making sure that when we repeal, we know what the replacement looks like.’

    But from McClatchy comes the problem that the repeal forces find themselves:

    Now that it’s on the chopping block, Obamacare has never been more popular.

    The call for action [by Democrats against repeal], along with a grassroots movement that is staging rowdy protests at Republican town halls nationally, is complicating Republican efforts to move swiftly on their campaign promise to dismantle the 2010 law.

    It appears that conservatives are damned if they do and damned if they don’t.

    So, where does that leave Obamacare and the Republicans who don’t have a replacement plan? Well, up the creek because Comrade Trump/Bannon has instructed the IRS to not pay attention to the box on their tax form stating whether a person purchased health insurance. If there is no penalty for not having health insurance, those who are young or healthy who do not want to purchase insurance will have no incentive to do so and the Obamacare health insurance death spiral will begin. With fewer healthy insured, rates will rise on the pool of sicker participants causing more healthy people to drop their insurance causing prices to rise even higher causing more people to drop…

    Seeing the writing on the wall, Humana has given notice that it will drop out of the ACA market next year and Aetna has expressed that they might as well. Once the death spiral gains momentum, expect more companies to follow suit.

    So, where does that leave us? It appears that between the Freedom Caucus and the new IRS rule the GOP is finally going to get what it has been “messaging” for the last seven years but they are, as yet, ill prepared to offer the health insurance substitute that they promised containing the benefits that their constituents have learned to love and for which they are clamoring.

    • John Bernard Books

      Republicans are foolishly trying to fix obamacare. It will never work.
      They have to ditch and start over knowing dems will not cooperate even though it is in their constituents best interest.

    • WUSRPH

      Finding a way to provide the same coverage as the ACA at a cheaper cost is probably impossible…but that is not what the Freedom Caucus or the likes of Ted Cruz want. They want the government totally out of the business.

      Cruz made his stance clear during the debate with his Democratic opponent back in 2014 during which he was asked if he would support the repeal of the ACA and he responded that it would be an easy vote for him since he believed that any role in health care by the federal government was unconstitutional.

      Cruz may have been right when he later said that the GOP had to act fast to kill Obamacare before it became fully operative (which it now has) because, if it did not, “the public would grow to like it too much” to make repeal possible.

      It will be interesting to see how Trump will live up to his promises for a system that covers everyone at a lower price under these circumstances. I doubt he can.

      • SpiritofPearl

        Medicare for all would be more cost-effective than any cobbled-together Rube-Goldberg contraption the GOP can devise. Canada spends about 8% of their GDP on healthcare compared with 12% of what the U.S. spends, yet their outcomes are the same as ours on a wide range of criteria – life expectance, maternal mortality, etc.

        The GOP doesn’t care if you die:

        https://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2017/02/gop-base-poverty-snap-social-security/516861/

        • dave in texas

          The problem is that Obamacare essentially *is* the cobbled-together Rube Goldberg contraption that the GOP devised. It was what the Heritage Foundation came up with, mandate and all, in the early 90s to go against the Clinton healthcare plan, and what Massachusetts did under Romney. Obama’s problem was in thinking that the GOP would support the GOP plan if he were the one offering it.

          • SpiritofPearl

            My point exactly! Single payer for all was the way to go, but some Dems were weak-kneed, including Obama.

            We ALL pay for the health care of the uninsured in ER costs, lost wages, and failed lives. Healthy people are more productive people.

          • SpiritofPearl

            And the GOP offered nothing . . .

          • WUSRPH

            I once read that one of the reasons auto makers went to Canada was that it cost them $1,500 more per auto to make a car here because of health insurance costs that the Canadians provided at no direct cost to the makers.

          • BCinBCS

            As long as I have studied health insurance, that is the one fact that baffles me. Why won’t the Republicans take that financial burden off of businesses. Health insurance is an expense just like taxes and you certainly know their attitude toward taxes.

          • SpiritofPearl

            Because Big Insurance, Big Pharma, and Big AMA donate Big Bucks . . .

          • BCinBCS

            Big Pharma and Big Docs don’t care who pays them, It’s Big Insurance that wants to keep the non-single payer system.

          • SpiritofPearl

            With our current system, Big Pharma makes out like bandits. In the UK all prescriptions cost the same, about £7. Here they vary wildly. My friends in India roll their eyes at what we pay for pharmaceuticals here. The VA is the only U.S. agency allowed to make drug companies bid on the drugs they buy.

            I’ve mentioned this before, but I’ll reiterate it: read “Bitter Pill,” a 30-page monograph by Stephen Brill that describes the baroque pricing scheme hospitals charge patients based on their insurance coverage. It’s a racket.

          • BCinBCS

            I too think that single payer is the way to go but I disagree that Obama could have passed it. Democrats are like a herd of cats and it’s nearly impossible to get all of them on the same page.

          • SpiritofPearl

            They felt it was too risky politically to go for single payer.

  • John Bernard Books

    Am I happy? You bet! My portfolio is growing by leaps and bounds….

  • WUSRPH

    Can anyone imagine a “one state” in Palestine in which Arabs and Jews live together under a democratically elected government? I can’t…..We Americans like to think that our pluralistic system can work anywhere, but the realities are that a multi-ethnic/religious state is a rare thing that can only exist in the rare situation where there was no existing society and in which the rule of law is an accepted thing. Those conditions simply do not exist in the Middle East.

    The closest thing I can see to a “one state” solution in the Middle East that operates under democratic principles is a variation of the system used in Lebanon before that country collapsed into chaos in the 70s…..Under that system, various government offices were split among the three major religious groups—Catholics (Maronite), Greek Orthodox and Muslims. The problem was that the Muslim population soon outgrew the other two and there was a demand that it receive representation equal to its size (the fact that there are several types of Muslims did not help the situation)…..The Israelis and the Palestinians might try something similar, but eventually the same problem is going to occur there. The reality is that you cannot have a one state in which the Jews (and their interests) are protected unless it is one in which the Muslims are discriminated against. That may be acceptable to some, maybe even to Trump, but I doubt most Americans would accept it….nor would the Palestinians or their Arab-stare supporters.

    (An illustration of the problem with the Lebanese solution is a story about a situation during the Arab-Israeli War of 1948 in which, during the midst of a small battle between Lebanese Army forces and Israelis an observer saw a Lebanese Army platoon sitting in a ditch while the battle went on. He asked them why they were not helping their fellow soldiers only to be told: “You see we are Maronites and we just lost a man. We are waiting for the Arabs and the Orthodox to lose one too.”)

  • WUSRPH

    A clearly biased but interesting article on the effort to make “religious freedom” a right above all other rights and to legalize discrimination….

    https://newrepublic.com/article/140645/trump-republicans-redefining-religious-freedom-favor-christians

    http://tinyurl.com/zef3d2m

    • SpiritofPearl

      Betcha “religious freedom” will not apply to Muslims, Hindus, Jews, atheists . . .

      • WUSRPH

        They would not be able to totally ignore the rights of other religions even under their misinterpretation of the First Amendment, but protecting them is clearly not their intent. However, they might argue that you don’t have to hire or serve one if your religion tells you they are evil

        • SpiritofPearl

          I know of a Unitarian minister who attended one of GWB’s “faith-based” initiative gatherings. Out of thirty attendees, one was Jewish. The rest were Christian.

  • John Bernard Books

    Best news conference ever…..and thats how you deal with dems.
    Chuckie Schumer is a liteweight……hahaha priceless.
    “How come you haven’t met with the Congressional Black Caucus?” Trump, “I’ve tried to set up meetings with the CBC but they refuse to meet with me.”
    hahaha

  • John Bernard Books

    Snowflake is feeling off center today 10 posts in the last 15 minutes….

  • John Bernard Books

    Trump is killing dems and their “very fake news”…..hahaha
    http://ktrh.iheart.com/onair/michael-berry-13986/trump-cnn-is-very-fake-news-15569605/

  • John Bernard Books

    You will not see this posted by TM only by me……
    ““Today’s FBI/IRS raid of crooked Texas Democrat Carlos Uresti’s law office proves once again that there is an unprecedented amount of corruption among Texas Democrats. From State Rep. Ron Reynolds, who’s already been sentenced to a year in prison for ambulance chasing, to State Rep. Dawnna Dukes, who was indicted on thirteen felony and two misdemeanor charges, to the raids of Senator Uresti’s law office earlier today, Texas Democrats continue to find themselves mired in corruption and scandal. The cascade of these issues prove that Texas Democrats only care about power, as opposed to the constituents they’re supposed to be representing. I’d be quite nervous about the quality of candidates the Texas Democrats intend to field in 2018 right about now if I were them.””
    https://www.texasgop.org/chairman-mechler-statement-on-the-fbiirs-raid-of-txdem-carlos-urestis-law-office/

    there is a reason why dems have not held a statewide office in over 20 years…..

  • John Bernard Books

    I absolutely hate liars…and as we all know most dems are liars. But this lady should rot in a special place in hell…
    “If a tree falls in the forest and no one is there to hear it, did it make a noise? If the nation’s largest abortion vendor bragged about spending more than $30 million to elect Hillary Clinton then failed, would they get to describe themselves as “nonpartisan”? In the world their president, Cecile Richards, lives in, that answer is absolutely yes.”
    http://thefederalist.com/2017/02/16/long-list-lies-planned-parenthood-adds-nonpartisan/

    But apparently the stupids believe her….

  • WUSRPH

    For Jadedhaven:

    Today’s misaction by the Senate State Affairs Committee:

    After brief testimony the Senate State Affairs Committee today approved a measure that could result in major revisions to the US Constitution by a convention made up of delegates from the states without any vote to approve such by the voters of Texas. The measure, SJR 2, would call for a so-called “Convention of the States” at which delegates could draft proposed revisions to the US Constitution. Such a convention is authorized under Article V of the US Constitution but none has ever been called. Calling one requires action by 34 states. Eight states have already approved such a resolution. NO APPROVAL BY THE VOTERS OF TEXAS WOULD BE REQUIRED OR EVEN REQUESTED. The decision would rest solely in the hands of the Legislature.

    The Senate committee also approved a bill setting up a method to select 5 delegates and 5 alternates to such a convention….ALL OF WHOM MUST BE MEMBERS OF THE TEXAS HOUSE AND SENATE (3 delegates and 3 alternates from the House and 2 and 2 from the Senate). Again. NO INPUT by the voters is required or requested. The decision would rest solely in the hands of the Legislature.

    Supporters of the proposal—including Gov. Abbott—claim that is necessary to reduce the power of the federal government. They brush off fears of a so-called “run away convention” that would make drastic changes in the US Constitution with a claim that the SJR limits the powers of the convention to: establishing term limits for federal officials, requiring that the federal govt. balance its budget AND a generalized statement that many fear could cover almost any action under the guises of “limiting the power and jurisdiction of the federal government”.

    They also claim that, should the delegates go beyond that broad power or “go rouge” the legislature has the power to recall them. However, there is no guarantee that the delegates and/or the convention once seated would obey such a recall notice.

    Opponents argue that there is no need for such a convention…..since the Constitution provides another method for amendments which has been used 27 times. In addition, they note that the very convention that drafted the current US Constitution was itself just such a “run away convention” as it had been established only for the purpose of suggesting changes in the then existing Articles of Confederation but, once assembled, went rouge and adopted an entirely new system of government.

    Supporters also claim that, even should such a convention go beyond its instructions, its product must still be approved by 3/4ths of the States…….

    Even if one assumes that the delegates to such a convention would honor their instructions and abide by the limits, many fear that the “limiting the power and jurisdiction” language leaves too much of an opening for attacks on some of our basic rights and liberties. Others, myself included, view the kinds of changes outlined by Gov. Abbott as an attack on the principle of the UNION and, in many ways, would constitute a return to a government much more like that under the Articles of Confederation.

    Abbott has laid out 9 proposed changes as follows:

    I. Prohibit Congress from regulating activity that occurs wholly within one State.
    II. Require Congress to balance its budget.
    III. Prohibit administrative agencies—and the unelected bureaucrats that staff them—from creating federal law. IV. Prohibit administrative agencies—and the unelected bureaucrats that staff them—from
    preempting state law.
    V. Allow a two-thirds majority of the States to override a U.S. Supreme Court decision. (this gives the balance of judicial power to state legislatures)
    VI. Require a seven-justice super-majority vote for U.S. Supreme Court decisions that invalidate a democratically enacted law. (presumably both federal, state and local laws)
    VII. Restore the balance of power between the federal and state governments by limiting the former to the powers expressly delegated to it in the Constitution.
    VIII. Give state officials the power to sue in federal court when federal officials overstep their bounds.
    IX. Allow a two-thirds majority of the States to override a federal law or regulation.
    Many of which look good until you consider their possible impact and the way they could (and might be) used to override liberties now enjoyed by millions of Americans.

    • SpiritofPearl

      3/4s . . .

    • WUSRPH

      It should also be noted that nothing in SJR 2 provides for how any proposals approved by such a Convention of the States would be approved by the State. It could well be by simple action by the Texas Legislature…again without any direct input from the public.

      The Founders deliberately decided NOT to allow the existing colonial governments to have the final say on what became the U.S. Constitution but, instead, called for conventions of delegates directly elected by the voters from single-member districts to make that decision. They did this to make it clear that the new government was not created by the existing colonial governments (which became states under the new constitution) but BY THE PEOPLE. This is a major distinction between the Constitution and the Articles of Confederation—a difference that Gov. Abbott either does not understand or of which he disapproves.

      Presumably any new constitutional convention could make its own decision…….but, at this stage, nothing is in writing giving THE PEOPLE any direct say on any thing such a convention might propose.

    • BCinBCS

      Those nine proposed changes to the Constitution would effectively eliminate the collective good that the federal government does in exchange for a state patchwork of craziness,

      I’m a liberal and a Federalist so I see adoption of those principals as a reversal of the great strides that this country has taken to adapt a better, freer, more egalitarian country.

      Thanks for the time, effort and knowledge that went into your post, W.

  • WUSRPH

    In other action Thursday the Senate State Affairs Committee also reported a bill that would make it illegal for state entities and school districts, etc. to collect union dues from employees’ paychecks for all but a select group of public workers.

    Senate Bill 13 by Sen. Joan Huffman, R-Houston, would apply to state and government employees such as teachers, corrections officers and child protective service workers, while exempting police officers, firefighters and emergency first responders as well as charitable organizations. The exemptions, Huffman said, were due to those groups serving communities with “great honor and distinction.”

    A similar bill passed the Senate during the last Regular Session but it passed so late in the session that it could not get thru the House’s rules in time to pass.

    • BCinBCS

      …groups serving communities with “great honor and distinction.”

      Oh, I agree. Everyone other than cops and fire fighters are pond scum. They’re luck that we let then have a salary.

  • WUSRPH
    • BCinBCS

      From the WaPo article: “the city is paying $500,000 a day to guard Trump Tower

      A half of a million dollars a day! Did they gold leaf the police too?

      Also there’s this: “Trump’s frequent travel belies his repeated criticism of Obama as a “habitual vacationer” enjoying taxpayer-funded golf getaways. It also comes after his own promises: He told the Hill newspaper in 2015, “I would rarely leave the White House because there’s so much work to be done.”

      I warned you that this man is a grifter… but would you listen?…

  • WUSRPH

    I am a little disappointed that no one made any substantial comment on the constitutional convention post. I admit it is a long shot that it will take place……but I would think somebody other than me would be concerned about the possibility of five members of the Texas Legislature REWRITING THE US CONSTITUTION. THE HORROR!

  • WUSRPH

    Over the last few years we heard a lot from Rick Perry and Gov. Abbott about why Texas should not expand Medicaid coverage as allowed under the ACA even though it would result in the State receiving billions more from the federal government. There usual argument was that the Feds could not be trusted to honor the pledge not to put more of the cost on the State. WELL, it turns out that they might have been right….BUT it isn’t the evil Democrats who plan to do so, but their own Republicans:

    “Under the ACA, the federal government covers more than 90 percent of the costs to insure the expanded Medicaid population. The GOP blueprint suggests slowly stepping down that percentage over an undetermined period of time, after which states “would be reimbursed at their traditional match rates for these ­beneficiaries.” Those rates vary from state to state; some receive as little as 50 percent, meaning ­individual states could lose hundreds of millions of dollars a year in federal reimbursements under the GOP proposal.” (Washington Post)

    • BCinBCS

      Never fear, the GOP will protect your rights…your right to die.

  • John Bernard Books

    Another dem under investigation…..
    “the raid “proves once again that there is an unprecedented amount of corruption among Texas Democrats.” Mechler called the San Antonio senator “crooked,” and compared Uresti to the likes of Rep. Ron Reynolds, D-Missouri City, who was sentenced to a year in prison for ambulance chasing, and Rep. Dawnna Dukes, D-Austin, who was recently indicted on 13 felony counts of tampering with governmental records and two misdemeanor counts of abuse of official capacity.”
    http://www.dallasnews.com/news/texas-legislature/2017/02/16/fbi-irs-agents-raid-law-office-sen-carlos-uresti-san-antonio

    In the past decade, the FBI has recorded 369 conviction of political corruption from Rio Grande Valley to Laredo, 95% of them involving Hispanic Democrats. Perhaps it’s time to move the focus of federal investigations to San Antonio and Bexar County.

  • John Bernard Books

    Can he do that?….
    “CBS News announced that Rex Tillerson, the new Secretary of State, fired most of the 7th floor policy makers who so famously called themselves the “shadow government”.”
    http://www.independentsentinel.com/begun-tillerson-fires-7th-floor/

    Thursday was a great day in America….
    Sec of State fires the whole 7th floor…..
    Another dem investigated by the FBI….
    President Trump’s great presser………..
    and my portfolio went up………………….

  • WUSRPH

    I’m a little surprised that no one has yet commented on the Washington State Supreme Court ruling finding the florist in he wrong for refusing to sell flowers to a gay wedding. It certainly will be cited by the advocates of the various so-called “religious freedom” proposals being pushed in the Texas Legislature by a group led by JJ”s rep., Rep. Krause.

  • WUSRPH

    Trump told us that he would have an “Immigration Enforcement Force” (IEF) to weed out all those 11 million illegal aliens….Now some sources are saying—and the WH is denying—that what he had in mind was using the National Guard. I guess someone told him about the posse comitatus law

    • SpiritofPearl

      Has anyone in the WH read the Constitution?

      • WUSRPH

        The question is not whether someone has READ the Constitution…..It is whether they UNDERSTAND it. Cruz, for example, likes to brag that he memorized the Constitution when he was a kid….but a trained parrot can do that….Understanding it, which he doesn’t, takes thinking about it, not just memorizing the words.

        • SpiritofPearl

          Oh, they’ve read it and understand it. They deliberately choose to ignore it.

  • John Bernard Books

    Just a quick reminder of who the dems are…
    “Kennedy’s message was simple. He proposed an unabashed quid pro quo. Kennedy would lend Andropov a hand in dealing with President Reagan. In return, the Soviet leader would lend the Democratic Party a hand in challenging Reagan in the 1984 presidential election. “The only real potential threats to Reagan are problems of war and peace and Soviet-American relations,” the memorandum stated. “These issues, according to the senator, will without a doubt become the most important of the election campaign.””
    http://www.forbes.com/2009/08/27/ted-kennedy-soviet-union-ronald-reagan-opinions-columnists-peter-robinson.html

    “In return, the Soviet leader would lend the Democratic Party a hand in challenging Reagan in the 1984 presidential election.”
    dems have been in bed with Russia against America for years…..