Link roundup, 1/19/2015

From The Atlantic: Donald Trump’s surreal visit to Liberty University, where he was compared to Martin Luther King and then botched the scripture message.

From The Daily Dot: This is what a war looks like now.

From the Washington Post: Marijuana doesn’t make you stupid.

From Noahpinion: More on a subject we’ve been discussing at length; how the left talks about race.

From Gizmodo: Another example of why China is not quite ready to be a dominant economic power.

From Wired: How car companies like Tesla are preparing the way for driverless cars.



Chris Ladd is a Texan living in the Chicago area. He has been involved in grassroots Republican politics for most of his life. He was a Republican precinct committeeman in suburban Chicago until he resigned from the party and his position after the 2016 Republican Convention. He can be reached at gopliferchicago at gmail dot com.

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243 comments on “Link roundup, 1/19/2015
  1. antimule says:

    I doubt that anyone is going to see this, but I think it is the best explanation for the rise of Trump:

    It describes the rise of Trump as the revolt of the wage class against a salary class and an investment class. Essentially in his view, there’s a hourly wage class (blue collar) and a salary class (white collar). Former was largely destroyed due to globalization (that benefited the later) and illegal immigration. Trump is the only politician who at least appears to be looking out for the wage class. I definitely don’t agree with everything the author said, but is insightful nonetheless.

  2. 1mime says:

    Two memorable decisions were reached today by SCOTUS and a Harris County Grand Jury as announced by The Atlantic tonight:

    “A Houston grand jury indicted two anti-abortion activists involved in the Planned Parenthood videos. ” (HooRay – these people will do anything to entrap others then twist the truth to suit their perverted views. It’s OK to disagree with PP; it is not OK to set people up.)

    “The Supreme Court ruled that convicts who were sentenced to life in prison as juveniles can seek parole. ”
    (Part of the justice system changes that are finally beginning to happen.)

  3. 1mime says:

    As gun violence is so closely linked to law enforcement responsibilities and to many abuses therein, it is interesting to see the NRA and other gun rights proponents double down to oppose the extremely mild measures announced by Pres. Obama. There was interesting push-back by the NSSF, the National Shooting Sports Foundation, which represents the firearms and ammunition industry, (and) has taken a less confrontational tone than other gun groups. There wasn’t sufficient detail to document exactly what they opposed, merely a comment that they didn’t feel it was fair to be included with groups that oppose any sensible gun legislation. If they are correct, the President has offended one of the few gun organizations who was in his corner….or, were they really?

    I wonder what the position of the police organizations are on the measures included in the President’s E.O. on initiatives expanding gun registration and access. A list is appended in the link below for all to read and determine if you feel his thrust is really to take people’s guns away en masse, As many here have noted, these reforms offered an opportunity for the NRA and other gun rights proponents to show their support for sensible reform. Instead, as I sadly expected, they are using it to create fear and anger (as well as fund raise, I am sure although I am not on the NRA mailing list so can’t confirm or deny).

  4. vikinghou says:

    Here’s an excellent NYT article concerning the GOP panic about Trump and Cruz. Which candidate would do the least damage to the party?

    I loved one of the comments: The GOP is a Uranium 238 nucleus that has just absorbed a slow neutron. It is oscillating wildly and fission will soon occur.

  5. flypusher says:

    Some breaking political news, Cruz gets the coveted Glenn Beck endorsement:

    So this means we’ll have Palin and Beck fighting each other in a steel cage political death match! Popcorn futures, people!

    /and the popper I order should arrive today!

  6. Tuttabella says:

    Continuing with a thread from below, about suspending our pragmatism and letting our imaginations run free … if I were in charge of the Reparations Project, I would propose free lifetime voluntary education and instead of stressing boring pre-professional and vocational classes, the focus would be on the liberal arts – literature, art, music, philosophy, foreign languages – to open minds and broaden horizons.

    • MassDem says:

      You mean there’s life beyond STEM? How quaint!

      Just kidding, I totally agree with you despite being a math/science geek.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        I propose a lifetime plan because kids don’t always appreciate the free education available to them during high school, and as they grow older and wiser they might develop a thirst for knowledge and betterment, and I think it would be good to have the opportunity available on a longterm basis. The public library system has a lot to offer, but I think an organized educational program with teachers would be the best thing. And it would be voluntary.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        And maybe expand the role of the public librarian into a more educational role, a combination of curator and teacher, on a formal basis.

      • 1mime says:

        As an “old” public education advocate, I lobbied long and hard to keep elementary school libraries open during the summer with active programming that was marketed to our vacationing students. Keep their minds engaged; encourage a love for reading and creative thinking; have them in a safe environment. What’s not to like? Never got it done. A real pity.

      • MassDem says:

        “….kids don’t always appreciate the free education available to them during high school”

        Truer words were never spoken. Oftentimes, either the kids could care less, or they care as far as good grades are a stepping stone to an elite college. In my experience, it’s rare to meet a high schooler who’s actually excited about learning. Fortunately, that tends to change when they reach college and take more challenging courses tuned to their interests.

        You can see the contrast in how adults view education in the posts and comments on this site…I can only speak for myself, but I’ve learned a lot participating here. Learning opportunities are not confined to the classroom, they can come from the free exchange of ideas also.

      • MassDem says:

        Btw, I love your idea of transitioning public libraries from “a place to borrow books” to place for continuing education. Our town library already offers free public talks, etc., but that role could be greatly expanded.

      • flypusher says:

        “Fortunately, that tends to change when they reach college and take more challenging courses tuned to their interests.”

        Been there, done that. I was bored with a whole lot of my high school courses. I had zero interest in history until I experienced it taught at the college level. So we really need to address we can’t have that at the high school level.

      • 1mime says:

        I agree, Fly, MassDem and Tutta. We have to make education relevant to children. The world is so different from yesteryear’s educational process. I think the kids are trying to tell us something….if only we would listen….That said, there is a responsibility for parents to not only teach respect for an education, but the responsibilities and opportunities it entails. Large swaths of kids get very little at home in this regard.

      • johngalt says:

        Listen, I’m all in favor of a liberal education, but the focus on STEM is because there are jobs there. It is harder to translate the soft skills of the classics into a paycheck. Proposing educational reforms based on what worked for WASPs in the 1950s with the means to go to Princeton is not bound to work.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        I think it’s good for minorities to be exposed to a liberal arts education, to enjoy the privilege of thinking like a WASP, where anything is possible and money is not a consideration, and from that perspective of imagining that anything might be possible they can then go into specifics about what they really do want and then go back to thinking incrementally about how to actually accomplish it, or maybe settle for a little bit less but still more than what they thought were their only options. Otherwise, if all they hear is what they CAN’T do, or the 2 or 3 things they CAN do, they will never get past that mindset.

        I would even say that a liberal arts education might be a stepping stone necessary for minorities to advance to a STEM career, because it’s the liberal arts mentality that would foster the mindset that would make them see STEM as a viable option.

      • flypusher says:

        We need a balance here. JG is absolutely right about it being more difficult to get jobs (or at least good paying non-service sector jobs) with non-STEM degrees. But the profound ignorance so many Americans have about their own history is one of the things feeding our current political turmoil.

      • 1mime says:

        Exposure to the arts rounds a person, STEM preparation when modified to STEAM, is the way to go (-:

        It is important that young people with passionate interests take the time to assess livelihood capability. The value of adding art to other curricula is that it broadens one’s view of the world, and helps us be more appreciative of individual contributions. Computers offer tremendous opportunity to look at all the possibilities that exist within one’s interest field, not the least of which is the necessity – employability. Of course for those adults who hope their adult children will always live with them, the sky is the limit!

    • Tuttabella says:

      Mass Dem, expanding the role of public librarians might also be an answer to the problem of their diminishing role due to the rise of the internet and digital media.

    • tuttabellamia says:

      Mime, I love your proposal about keeping school libraries open during the summer. It is totally viable, so it’s a shame it went nowhere. I wonder if there is a place for the private sector, or private philanthropy, in all of this.

      • 1mime says:

        Public education shouldn’t depend upon private donations to accomplish this. The benefits are so many that the pay-back is irrefutable. Even factoring in utilities and minimal staffing (and certainly volunteers could augment paid staff), the cost as compared to benefit is small. This should be a slam-dunk project.

        The same, of course, could be said for keeping computer labs open, and vocational shops and school clinics (where they exist….and they are needed in every high school at a minimum)….I guess I’m talking about something really controversial here, year round school for those who want or need it…not just those who have to repeat courses.

        Our regional public libraries try to offer engaging summer programs for children, but why waste these publicly funded school facilities whose sole purpose is to educate our children?

    • tuttabellamia says:

      Reparations may be more about mindset than actual wealth.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        A coworker of mine assumed that buying a house and traveling to certain destinations were totally out of reach. It turned out she had enough money to travel, and buying a house will be doable if she starts saving.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        And as Magpie de Crow posted below, when he was harrassed by police, it was his peace of mind that was stolen from him.

        BTW, When I say mindset is important, I’m NOT saying that the problem is all in people’s heads, or that it’s not real, only that it should not be surprising that a history of harrassment and discrimination may likely result in a personal mindset of low expectations and fear.

  7. MassDem says:

    Oh my…National Review (and many prominent conservatives) went for it.

    This shows, as much as anything, how little the GOP establishment understands the concerns of their base. I don’t think Trump supporters are really all that concerned with how closely he fits the image of the True Conservative.

    I don’t know who R. R. Reno is, but I like his phrase “Trumpster diving”. It so perfectly captures what I think of Trump’s message in a mere two words.

    • rulezero says:

      The replies on that thread are fascinating to read. I see everything from Beck hatred to casting doubts on Trump’s conservative credentials to lambasting Sowell for pulling a Godwin to the SF crowd cackling over how the stranglehold of The Jew™ will end when Trump is President.

      • flypusher says:

        So many ugly prejudices of all types being exposed in Trump’s run. I can only hope that this will end up being politically therapeutic.

        I too love the phrase “Trumpster diving” and plan on using it a lot!

    • Ryan Ashfyre says:

      What a ship of fools. Just when Cruz was trying to paint Trump as being a part of the “establishment” – obviously a desperate move – the National Review comes along and gives The Donald the perfect counter-punch. He couldn’t have planned it any better if he’d gone out and purchased the article himself.

      • 1mime says:

        The irony of all the opinions expressed in the National Review piece is that we have a fiscal conservative in office right now! Obama is liberal in his social positions, but he has demonstrated fiscal prudence for seven years, which has largely gone unnoticed and with little accolade.

    • Sir Magpie De Crow says:

      Trump has apparently retweeted a comment to millions of followers that originally came from an avowed neo-nazi fascist. Why in God’s name? Because he doesn’t vet things for $h*t and the posting had what I guess Trump thought was an amusing insult against Jeb! Bush. This wasn’t your one of run of the mill (blink or you miss ’em) white supremacist, the guys twitter handle is something like @whitegenocide. You know… the kind of bigot that posts over and over again a rather infamous cut paste comment about how racial mixing amounts to genocide of whites in America.This guy has also posted derisive/vile comments about MLK. Trump/GOP… making more inroads with minorities in the wake of the 2012 autopsy. Great job guys. At this rate the only significantly racially progressive member of the sprawling (and clearly dysfunctional conservative movement) that may be left standing in 2016 will be Pat Buchanan. If you think I’m lying or delusional you should read a lot of the comments right now of people on Politico and National Review (among others) defending Trump on this incident and castigating those harpies of “Political Correctness”. Since when did bashing presidential candidates for affiliating with white supremacists on social media (esp. post Obama first presidential election) become political correctness? I thought that was merely being politically decent.

      • Sir Magpie De Crow says:

        Considering this latest twitter controversy involving the Donald, and that National Review has finally sacked-up and come out against Trump I predict that long lived publication will soon be replaced by the only true conservative publication for all real Americans where “cuckservatives” aren’t allowed… VDARE.

  8. Griffin Williams says:

    Hey Chris it’s commentor Griffin. I know you have alot of interest in modern racism and Donald Trump and thought you might find it a bit interesting that the Donald’s subreddit just went full anti-Semite, not even bothering with dog whistles anymore. I didn’t want to leave the link on the comments section of your blog because I didn’t think you wanted a link to explicit anti-Semitism on your blog and I don’t know your policy on these kinds of things. Anyways I hope you can get some sort of milage out of it and see what kind of conspiracy theories they’re into and why, you’re better at analyzing this stuff than most pundits.

  9. Griffin says:

    Don’t know if anyone else cares, but Donald Trump’s political subreddit was just caught by other subreddits for going full anti-Semite (as in upvoting explicitly anti-Jewish conspiracy theories). Hopefully not a look at possible things to come.

    I would post a direct link but I don’t know if Lifer would be okay with that considering it’s linking to a page filled with anti-semitism.

    It’s getting hard to tell the actual Trump supporters from the trolls.

    • 1mime says:

      What’s pretty amazing is that the super pac donor previously had supported Rand Paul’s candidacy. How does one go from a Rand Paul to a Donald Trump?! That’s got to take some deep thinking…..

  10. Stephen says:

    This from my home town paper

    Florida is a purple state and more reflective of the nation as a whole than early primary states. Right now I do not like any of the GOP candidates. I am watching the polls and if Hillary and Sanders get close I might change parties so I can vote for her in the Primary. But right now it is not close. I agree with you lifer she is the best and I think the only qualified candidate right now. But my she comes with so much baggage. Trump and Cruz scare the hell out of me. Even though I normally would never vote for Sanders, if it was between those two I would choose Sanders in the theory he would do the least damage. And a GOP House would curtail what he could actually do. Thank you Founding Fathers for divided government.

    • Ryan Ashfyre says:

      Barring a political upheaval, Sen. Sanders, much as I like him, simply won’t be the Democratic nominee. His path to the nomination is far, far too narrow.

      Speaking of my home state of Florida though, it is interesting to think about what a Clinton vs Trump race would do to all the down-ballot races in the state, particularly with all of the new maps that will be in effect. That could also be said for Virginia as well.

    • 1mime says:

      Divided gov’t? Hmm, the only thing standing between total GOP control is Pres. Obama….Total control of Congress and a 5/4 majority on SCOTUS…Repubs have made a lot of gains. It’s time they got their ears boxed.

      • Doug says:

        mime, how do you figure that the the Repubs have a 5/4 SC? How do you explain the ACA and gay marriage decisions?

      • 1mime says:

        ACA – Roberts – straddling the middle….really sabotaged the chances of the ACA by ruling that states would not be held to mandatory medicaid participation. Gay marriage – forget which justice – has a family member who came out and it is said that this converted his conservative opinion on gay marriage. That’s a pretty simplistic answer, but that’s what flipped just one justice. In many, many decisions, it’s a 5 justice conservative majority.

        Don’t get me wrong – I would prefer that it be a 5 justice progressive majority, but I also like the fact that the court represents both positions with vigor. The courts are reflecting the changes in American thinking, Doug, whether (we) like it or not. What I strenuously object to is the court legislating. They should rule on the basis of case law and Constitutional principle, not “make” law.

      • Doug says:

        “What I strenuously object to is the court legislating.”

        I’m 100% with you on that. Although we probably have different ideas on just what that means.

      • 1mime says:

        Just to be specific, what I mean by not wanting the S.C. to legislate, is that this is Congress’ responsibility. They’ve become comfortable going in through the SC back door and that is not only gutless, I feel it defeats the whole separation of powers premise. We will disagree all day long on lots of things Doug, because of our individual beliefs, but the important thing is that laws be passed in full sunlight with rigorous debate. Then, if voters don’t like what they do, don’t re-elect the suckers!

  11. Griffin says:

    Jonathon Chait has an interesting article about Sanders, in which he basically endorses Clinton. He notes that unlike Trump and Cruz Sanders does not actually live in a “fantasy world” and has actual policy prescriptions, but that he just couldn’t enact his agenda.

    (Is the comments section of this stie broken? I can only view ten comments and cant see how many likes there are).

    I mostly agree with Chait here, I don’t think Sanders would destroy the Democratic Party or probably even lose the election (he can call himself a “socialist” but he’s just very liberal), he would just be paralized while in office by a Republican House. The next Democratic president will mostly influence foreign policy, which means the best reason to vote for Sanders is that you want a more non-interventionist foreign policy than Clinton offers. Also perhaps to try to shift the Overton window to the left, like the reverse of what happened with the election of Reagan.

    The one thing Chait really screws up is trying to compare Vermont’s single-payer system with a national one. Regardless of whether or not you agree with it a national one is far more viable because it has more power to haggle over and lower the price of prescription drug prices, which is the biggest reason Vermont’s didn’t work.

    • Griffin says:

      Since Bernie’s in the news lately here’s another interesting article but it’s from Ezra Klein:

      He compares and contrasts Sanders, Clinton, and Obama, and concludes that in practice a president Clinton wouldn’t be much different from a president Sanders. He’s basically correct.

      If you are a Sanders supporter who will sit out the election if Clinton is the nominee and thus be willing to lose the supreme court to more wingnut appointments, have an overly hawkish foreign policy, and allow the GOP to not have to worry about presidential veto’s, you’re a loon. If you are a Clinton supporter who would sit out the election if Sanders is the nominee, you’re a loon for the same reasons. I wish people would stop exaggerating the differences between the two. They would both be neccessary barriers to the far-right.

      • Ryan Ashfyre says:

        You’re missing the forest for the trees. It’s not on policy where the most important differences between Sanders and Clinton lie. Broadly speaking, you’re right when you infer that they share a lot of the same goals, but that’s not what you should be paying attention to. Look at the long game.

        Clinton wants to get this primary over with as soon as possible so she can get to the business of rebuilding the Democratic Party from the ground up, and we should be cheering her on in that effort. Even if you’re like Lifer and you hope that a new and reinvigorated Republican Party, one attune to ideas like a federal minimum income and others that would help to advance America forward in this new economy, emerges from this circus of a presidential campaign, it’s important to keep in mind that our country works best when we have two strong political parties that help to balance each other out, keeping a healthy balance of ideas flowing and bringing people together to advance the nation’s interests first.

        Hillary Clinton is by far the better candidate to advance this cause on the Democratic side. The reason why the Independent Senator from Vermont isn’t should be obvious.

        Furthermore, it’s been said before, but it bears repeating. Sen. Sanders is a candidate of the past, trying to regurgitate America’s golden age of labor unions, manufacturing and other such things that are behind us. That is simply the wrong mindset to carry us into the future and I fear that having him as president would drive America into stagnation and even take the country backwards.

        And perhaps most importantly of all, Sen. Sanders risks splintering the tenuous relationship that minorities have with the Democratic Party and rupturing their hold on the Electoral College, which is the linchpin to reforming the Republican Party through their inability to compete on a national level. Even the prospect is far too much of a risk to take when the safe bet of Hillary Clinton is there, ready and waiting.

        Don’t snatch defeat from the jaws of victory.

      • duncancairncross says:

        Hi Ryan
        You may be correct
        I am not so sure –
        In some ways this is like the competition for the Labour party leader in the UK
        The choice in the last election was Tory – or “New Labour” which was effectively “Tory Lite”
        The Tories won

        The Labour party membership for the first time all had a vote on a new leader,
        They chose Corbyn – “Old Labour”
        The “neoliberal” nonsense of the last 40 years has failed
        If given the choice of a collection of policies that have failed and failed badly
        Or the policies that were working for the 40 years before that – and even when “failing” still worked better than the “New” policies why would you stick to the New Failures rather than going back to the Old Successes?

        We won’t see the results of the Labour party changes until the next election

      • Griffin says:

        @Ryan I won’t, that’s why I’m going to vote for the Democratic nominee regardless of who it is. Really, just his position on being pro-union alone will create “stagnation” and drag us into the past? That’s quite an exaggeration, he wouldn’t even have the power to bring back unions if he wanted to. I notice nobody ever brings up his ideas on public colleges, hardly backwards. It doesn’t make much of a difference, again you are exagerrating the differences between him and Clinton. Clinton will not seriously threaten the Democratic Party by driving away progressives like some are saying, and Sanders won’t drive away minorites or guarentee victory for the current GOP frontrunners. Politically they’ll be roughly the same while in office and they’ll both try to maintain the Democratic coalition.

        Hillary will basically try to maintain the Democratic Party as it is, because that’s all she needs to do. In practice so will Sanders. Both have flaws (Hillary’s foreign policy is pretty backwards as well) but both are still preferable to the current GOP frontrunnners, that’s my only point, as much as people want to say “both sides are just as bad”.

      • Creigh says:

        To me, the big difference between a Clinton Administration and a Sanders Administration would be the bully pulpit. One would be hectoring against Wall Street and corporatist domination, and the other would be saying that Very Serious People understand that This Is The Way Things Have To Be. Also, Sanders would likely be more isolationist in foreign policy. I’m not isolationist by nature, but our foreign policy hasn’t exactly been a beacon of success lately either.

        I don’t see Sanders as being the radical he’s sometimes portrayed. For example I don’t see him burning down the ACA without a transition plan. More likely a slow expansion of Medicare/Medicaid, neither of which can be considered radical after 40 years of popular implementation.

        That said, I’m a Sanders supporter who will enthusiastically support the Democratic nominee whoever she is. And I fully expect Sanders to do the same.

      • johngalt says:

        Duncan, Jeremy Corbyn is the Labour head because they changed the rules on the leadership election to increase the weight of labor unions and because the more moderate vote was split three ways (by three less-than-impressive candidates). Cornyn is so far to the left of Sanders that he’d need a telescope to see him and the results are a typical disaster. His MPs hate him and are in open rebellion. If he is the party boss at the next election, Labour will go the Lib Dem route, which means swirling down the loo.

      • duncancairncross says:

        Hi John
        No not even close
        The Labour unions had LESS votes in the last party election than previously
        the big change was that the party members had a decent vote
        Also Corbyn won all of the categories –
        The three way split was irrelevant – he got over 60% of the votes,
        The main candidate for the “New Labour” Blairites got 4%!!
        We don’t know how he will go at the next election
        As the media are all owned by the right wing elite their prognostication is biased to say the least
        IMHO a lot of people would much rather vote for Labour than “Tory Lite”

        LibDems – I’m NOT a LibDem but I expect them to come back at the next election – they were punished at this one because they went into government with the Tories

      • Creigh says:

        OK, based on this link ( ) I’m feeling better about Clinton’s economic advisors. Gary Gensler seems to have a good handle on how the banking system failed in 2008, and what needs to be done to limit the effects of financial crises in the future.

        We pretty much never get this kind of in-depth analysis from the mainstream news. That’s unfortunate.

      • 1mime says:

        That is why “VOX” came into being, Creigh. Isn’t it fascinating how creatively we are solving gaps and problems today?

        I would say that The Atlantic Magazine consistently offers excellent indepth articles on important issues. These good writers are out there but many of them are finding new vehicles to express themselves, which in this day of innovation, is a great thing….working from home…working when they want….doing what they want. That’s Lifer’s message of a new social order, right?!

  12. Ryan Ashfyre says:

    New CNN/ORC poll has Trump ahead by eleven and Sanders by eight in Iowa. Curiously, this poll has the smallest sampling of any other this month. Something to keep in mind when talking about these candidates’ appeal in a general election. Just sayin’

  13. johngalt says:

    Life is getting tougher for Mr. Cruz. Here’s the potential split that Chris has warned about.

    • Ryan Ashfyre says:

      I’m more concerned about this seemingly increasing notion that Trump is being viewed more and more as a “plausible” alternative to Cruz. Apparently some are of the mindset that The Donald would less “cataclysmic” on down-ballot Republicans than Cruz would be.

      Best of luck with that theory.

      • 1mime says:

        Count me in with that theory, Ryan.

      • Ryan Ashfyre says:

        You might as well ask if you’d like the entire building scorched into naught but ash or simply left teetering on the edge of collapse. In either case, you’re going to have to clean up the mess and start all over again; not a bad idea considering what’s at stake.

      • 1mime says:

        We shall see, Ryan. I’ve been at this a while and though this election is breaking all the rules, I will get to vote in the Repub primary (TX) and I will support Trump. I am really down with ideologues. Too much religion and politics mixing for me. I’m voting for Hillary in the general if she’s the Dem nominee.

      • Ryan Ashfyre says:

        Texas is going to be an interesting beast, now that you bring it up. I can’t find any recent polling there, but I’ll be keen to see which way it swings if Trump manages to clean up with the first four states.

      • 1mime says:

        Living in TX and watching all “things politic”, I’d say Cruz. Tea Party’s very strong here as is the evangelical wing. You might recall that we have a governor who is nuts, an AG who’s under indictment and nuts, and the “honorable” far right Dan Patrick, Lt. Governor….the “holy trinity” of right wing politics. What’s not to like if you’re Cruz?

    • 1mime says:

      Couldn’t happen to a nicer guy. Knowing Cruz, he’ll attempt to sell this collegial rebuke into an marketing point that since everyone in his party hates him, that’s why he is the only true outsider. Sadly, many of his followers will buy this pablum.

      Ya reap what ya sow.

    • johngalt says:

      From the article.
      Graham, for instance, said that Trump was “crazy” with an “insane” foreign policy and Cruz was a “rigid ideologue,” both of which would be problematic against Hillary Clinton, even if voters view her as a “dishonest” candidate, he said.

      “Dishonest beats crazy,” said Graham, who dropped his bid for the GOP nomination last month. “Dishonest loses to normal. Just pick somebody normal. Pick somebody out of the phone book and we win.”

      So, Lindsay Graham has come to the point where he thinks picking someone out of the phone book would be an improvement over the GOP primary.

    • Creigh says:

      John Cole had a piece talking about twitter traffic he sees where (if I get this right) African Americans don’t think BS is focusing on their issues (BLM etc, I presume) but rather is focusing on economic issues. Of course, that wasn’t based on a poll so who knows how widespread it is.

      Maybe BS needs to run a few ads quoting MLK Jr on economic justice.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Reposting one of my comments from way below:

        Lifer, I don’t think you have to worry about Bernie Sanders shutting out the Black vote. Mr. Coates does not speak for the entire Black community, and I doubt their vote will depend on whether Mr. Sanders supports reparations. Has Hillary Clinton called for reparations?

        Black Democrats will start out by supporting Mrs. Clinton. If she were to lose the nomination to Mr. Sanders, they would support Sanders, especially when Mrs. Clinton endorses Sanders. I don’t see them crossing over to the Republican side, especially if Mr. Trump is the nominee. The Black community is practical.

        Even intellectuals like Mr. Coates would probably turn pragmatic and support Mr. Sanders if he is the nominee. I don’t see them crossing over to the Republican side either.

        I wonder if intellectuals like Thomas Sowell will stay with the Republican Party if Mr. Trump is the nominee. I could see him crossing over to the Democratic side in this instance.

      • Ryan Ashfyre says:

        @tuttabellamia: You’re being too black-and-white (no pun intended) about this. No one’s saying that if Sen. Sanders were the nominee, African-Americans would flock to vote for Trump. They might just not vote at all.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        But if it’s Sanders versus Trump, and Black Democrats stay home and don’t vote at all, they would be helping Trump indirectly. There is your gray.

      • Ryan Ashfyre says:

        I’m not saying that Sanders would lose to Trump (though it would be much closer than his ardent supporters believe), but it’s a dangerous gamble to expect people to come out and vote for you without something to inspire and motivate them. Fear and anger may work well enough for the white-collar voters who feel that “their country” is slipping away from them, but that does not apply to all.

        You can go ahead and believe that fear of a Trump presidency would motivate enough people to come out and vote. I don’t believe it’s that simple.

  14. 1mime says:

    This latest post by Larry Sabato with the U of VA Center of Politics, is interesting from both an historical perspective and current political election mechanics. Two separate articles.

  15. MassDem says:

    The race for the Republican nomination gets weirder…

    “The endorsement of Donald Trump by former Alaskan Gov. Sarah Palin (R) enters America into a new phase: a burgeoning new American rather than “global” human culture; a rising heartland ethic of rustic energy and faith in the everyman and woman and the Emersonian rediscovery of who we are, free and new again in nature. It is Andrew Jackson reborn; it is Jefferson reawakened.”

    -Bernie Quigley, The Hill, “Palin’s endorsement seals the deal for Trump”

    He also had this to say about Sarah Palin:

    “She represented a systemic change occurring in conservative politics, but in reality it should not be called “conservatism,” and should not even be called “politics.” A sea change was occurring in America which would touch on virtually every aspect of American life, and she, coming out of the Alaskan wilderness, brought with it an ascending forest spirit.”

    Ascending forest spirit??? Maybe being high does make one stupid after all.

  16. lomamonster says:

    I wish I were a fly on the wall at Davos to hear what the billionaires are saying about the election atmosphere in the U.S.

    • 1mime says:

      Don’t you imagine they’re so embarrassed about it that the American millionaires and billionaires are trying to find anything else to talk about? Like the U.S. stock market decline to over 600 points before settling down to just under 300 points down? That will interest them a lot more than these people who are adding to America’s challenges…..

    • Griffin says:

      Iowa’s not that important to be honest, because those voting in the GOP primary are a handful of fundies relatively isolated from the rest of the country. Rick Santorum won Iowa and look what it did for him. He’d get far more momentum from winning New Hampshire, he can afford to lose Iowa to Cruz as long as he has a strong showing there.

      • Ryan Ashfyre says:

        I’ve heard that argument before and while I understand the precedent behind it (look at who’s won Iowa before and how little that mattered in the long run), circumstances are different this time. Barring an upset, The Donald is likely to claim New Hampshire and South Carolina, with Nevada not far behind. This the GOP’s only real chance to dent Trumpmentum before it has a chance to gain some real, substantive steam with someone else laying claim to Iowa.

        Trump winning there would cement his message as a “winner” and a show of strength. He has FAR more to gain by winning there than anyone else does.

    • 1mime says:

      Interesting results, Ryan. Of note are these facts: almost half of the latino vote is in the Millennial group, an age group that is passionate but does not always turn out to vote. Also interesting is the impact of SCOTUS’ June ruling on the President’s DACA orders, protecting Dreamers and their parents. If the SC rules against Obama, latinos are motivated by anger against Republicans; if the SC rules with him, latinos may wish to demonstrate their support through voting. I don’t see a win either way for Republicans on this issue. Which is what they deserve for failing to get behind a credible, bi-partisan, quality Senate-passed bill for immigration reform.

      • Ryan Ashfyre says:

        I’m absolutely with you in that whichever way this goes, Republicans will have brought it on themselves, but let’s be careful in what we wish for. Republican weakness shouldn’t be taken as a symbol for Democratic strength; a leap of logic that I cringe at seeing more than I would care to these days.

        Whatever the case, Democrats and particularly Hillary Clinton should take this as an opportunity to reach out to the Hispanic community and say: “We won’t rest until comprehensive immigration reform is passed, but that is only the beginning. We need to expand opportunity for Hispanics and other minority groups across America. That starts with…”

        Not quite as elegant as I would have it said, but you get the point.

      • 1mime says:

        I do and I agree. I didn’t mean to sound like I was “gloating”, only that this ruling may not help the Republicans. Time will tell if the Democrats will help themselves. They need to get a new leader other than Debbie Wasserman Schultz, a fine person but “stale”.

      • Ryan Ashfyre says:

        Please. Don’t even get me started on Wasserman Schultz. For a supposed “leader,” she can’t even keep her own subordinates in line at the DNC, much less inspire them. Now she’s facing a primary challenge in her own home district in good ol’ Florida, the first time that’s ever happened to her, iirc.

        And let’s not forget the flack she’s brought on herself with the Democratic primary debates.

        I cringe every time I see her on TV. If ever there was a time she came across as authentic and passionate about the Democratic Party, I have yet to see it.

      • 1mime says:

        Who is keeping her in leadership within the DCC? And, why? Personally, I thought Howard Dean was the most direct, intelligent leader the Dems had in years. They canned him. As much as I support Democratic values, their internal organizational ability sucks. We talk about the “old white men” in the GOP who need to die out for bigotry to change; we have a comparable problem with “old white men and women” in the Democratic Party who exhibit a deficit of inspiring leadership. It’s so frustrating.

      • Ryan Ashfyre says:

        Yeah, we’ll see how the Supreme Court’s decision this November resonates with Latino voters. I’m not saying it’ll be a magic panacea for turnout, but there are a lot of factors we have yet to see come into view that could mark a turning point in 2016.

      • 1mime says:

        If the conservative justices on SCOTUS screw things up worse than they presently are, and I think that is patently possible, you may well be correct. It makes one fearful and hopeful at the same time. I keep hoping that people will start thinking about what is happening – really thinking and begin to assign responsibility with the 2016 elections. At the same time, I wonder if they have the mental capacity to know the difference.

    • 1mime says:

      Here’s an interesting chart from the Pew survey on voter opinions of acceptability of all 9 candidates (both parties)….note each category and the potential “average” center….

  17. Rob Ambrose says:

    Some gems from the Palin speech.

    “Power through strength. Well, then, we’re talking about our very existence, so no, we’re not going to chill. In fact it’s time to drill, baby, drill down.”

    “Looking around at all of you, you hard-working Iowa families. You farm families, and teachers, and Teamsters, and cops, and cooks. You rockin’ rollers. And holy rollers! All of you who work so hard. You full-time moms. You with the hands that rock the cradle. You all make the world go round, and now our cause is one.”

    “He is from the private sector, not a politician, can I get a ‘Hallelujah!’ Where, in the private sector, you actually have to balance budgets in order to prioritize, to keep the main thing, the main thing, and he knows the main thing: a president is to keep us safe economically and militarily. He knows the main thing, and he knows how to lead the charge. So troops, hang in there, because help’s on the way because he, better than anyone, isn’t he known for being able to command, fire!”

    “We, you, a diverse, dynamic, needed support base that they would attack. And now, some of them even whispering, they’re ready to throw in for Hillary over Trump because they can’t afford to see the status quo go, otherwise, they won’t be able to be slurping off the gravy train that’s been feeding them all these years. They don’t want that to end.”

    “Well, and then, funny, haha, not funny, but now, what they’re doing is wailing, ‘Well, Trump and his, uh, uh, uh, Trumpeters, they’re not conservative enough.’”

    Seriously, Ted Kaczynskis manifesto was more coherent and less rambling then this putz. I don’t know what’s worse, that she’d come to a platform like this and just wing it, or that this stream of (deranged) consciousness diatribe was actually a written speech.

    And this person is supposed to be a BOOST to a candidates presidential bid? It boggles the mind.

    • johngalt says:

      I never thought I’d write this, but the New York Daily News nailed it on the cover today.

    • Ryan Ashfyre says:

      Keep in mind that she did this right after the day that her son (or rather her drunk son with a four-year old daughter, I should say) assaulted his girlfriend and was arrested. One would think that whatever her naive political ambitions, Palin would at least make the effort to be a good parent, but it looks like even that was too much to ask. -__-

    • goplifer says:

      Honestly, I think she was probably drunk and in the midst of some kind of crack up on a personal level. She missed a campaign appearance today.

      • 1mime says:

        Is this a new problem for Palin?

      • Griffin says:

        In September she also gave a pretty crazy, incoherant speech that caused some liberals to think she was high on medication or something.

        See here for clips:

        I think she’s been on something for the past few months. I would guess pill abuse but I honestly have no clue.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Well, I hope she’s okay. I don’t wish harm on anyone.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        And no, thanks, I don’t want to see any embarrassing clips. We’ve become a nation of voyeurs.

      • Griffin says:

        Er this isn’t some tabloid that broke into her home to spy on her ithout her knowledge to get “crazy clips”. She openly gave this speech, in public, and to influence politics and policies that could affect many of us. Of course I agree with you that I hope she doesn’t hurt herself but it’s not unreasonable to look at her speeches because they do influence/mobilize real people and she is somehow a coveted endorsement for the GOP nomination. I more blame the people supporting her than anyone else though.

      • texan5142 says:

        Do not empathize with them, they are pod people soaked in self pity. Screw Palin, she made her bed. Do not be fooled into having empathy for this train wreck of their own making. Karma is just in this case.

      • 1mime says:

        What is McCain thinking? ““I have great affection and appreciation for her (Palin),” he said. “I respect what she does.”


      • Doug says:

        What’s he going to say?

        “Palin’s a total nutball. She would have been a terrible vice president, but my campaign was failing and I was desperate enough to try anything.”

      • tuttabellamia says:

        John McCain is a gentleman. No matter what he may think of her now, she was his VP mate and she spoke highly of him during her acceptance speech. What do expect him to say?

        Mr. Obama is also a gentleman. When the press asked him what he thought about Bristol Palin having a baby at 17 he simply replied that his own mother had him when she was 18.

        The media just likes to look for dirt, and I’m glad when they’re not given the satisfaction.

      • 1mime says:

        Someone has to state the obvious: “The empress has no clothes”.

      • Crogged says:

        Yes, that’s an acceptable level of honesty.

      • flypusher says:

        I hadn’t heard about Obama saying that. Good for him, he’s respecting the dignity of the office and refusing to step into the gutter. Also double good for McCain, because I figure he has a whole boatload of regrets concerning running mate selection. That shows a lot of restraint, and restraint is a good quality to have in a person with the power to launch nuclear missiles. I don’t see that quality in Trump or Cruz, and that is scary.

      • 1mime says:

        I hope all took the time to watch the google youtube interview of President Obama that I linked. So many things that a President says and does are scripted. This was all impromptu and I think reflected who Obama the man is. Very thoughtful and gentle humor.

      • Tuttabella says:

        Mime, I agree with you about President Obama. He has a straightforward yet graceful way of speaking. For someone who’s been called aloof and remote, he strikes me as very down to earth, and he talks common sense. Also, he does his best to balance all sides, as when he says in the interview you posted that he can relate to the negative experiences of the Black man with the police, yet he also expresses respect for what police officers have to go through.

  18. goplifer says:

    More evidence of the friction between the Sanders campaign and black voters at the Democratic Party’s core? This piece by Coates is a gem.

    • Rob Ambrose says:

      If black voters use support for reparations as their litnus test, they won’t vote for anybody.

    • johngalt says:

      Coates writes many passionate and eloquent pieces. This is not one of them. The response Sanders gives, quoted at the top of his essay, is exactly right. Reparations have zero chance of passing and this, by itself, makes them divisive. Better spend the money to improve prospects long-term (though what he suggests in terms of free college education also has zero chance of being implemented).

      • flypusher says:

        So what could Sanders (or any candidate) offer as reforms on the federal level that would result in tangible benefits for Black citizens? Based on current events, a few things come to mind:

        1) Police/criminal justice system

        The FBI needs to compile and maintain a comprehensive database on all incidents where police use force on civilians. You cannot deal with a problem until you define that problem. All police depts should be required to report these incidents to the FBI as they happen. It’s also time to take investigations out of the hands of the local DAs and kick them up to the state AGs to avoid that conflict of interest.

        Not to mention it’s time to reconsider this whole war on drugs thing.

        2) Environmental racism- What happened in Flint is just the latest episode. There’s a very sordid history of poor/non-White communities being harmed by environmental mishaps. So maybe some increased EPA attention/abatement action would rally some of the Black voters.

        3) Voting rights-we see the suppression shenanigans in actions again, rules that might look reasonable in theory, but in practice make it harder for minorities to vote. Such as the ID requirement. Many of us agree that the Dems blew it by fighting the law in court rather than insuring everyone had IDs. But this solution is still there for the doing. It might not even need a law; a grassroots effort by the candidate to get people IDs might do the trick.

        That’s a start- this is getting too long for an iPhone.

      • 1mime says:

        I agree with you JG. What’s done is done. Sanders is correct that we need to focus on doing things that make substantive change in the lives of Black people today….end profiling; equal justice in the justice system; reduce incarcertion ; eliminate housing discrimination; make post high school education affordable and accessible. Don’t look back – help today, now. Coates is a fine person and I hope his emphasis on moral reparation will receive more attention.

      • Crogged says:

        Yes, why give money directly to those harmed when we can get all Keynesian and amplify the economic effect for everybody. Poverty is the lack of money, not the lack of taking a college course and reparations providing capital to the portion of the population lacking capital (in large part because it was bloody stolen from them) would directly and positively impact the community. In the long term we’re all dead and Tutta has it right. Own it, fix it.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Thanks, Crogged, for replying to my rambling. I was afraid I would have to join in the bashing of Mrs. Palin to get a response from someone.

    • Tuttabella says:

      I think the point that Mr. Coates is trying to make is that Mr. Sanders is known for being radical and proposing things that would be divisive and have little chance of passing, and now when it relates to reparations he is suddenly practical and concerned about divisiveness.

      In this case I think Mr. Coates is just arguing about principle, about what he sees as hypocrisy on the part of Mr. Sanders. I don’t think he is actually demanding that Mr. Sanders find a way to pay reparations to the Black community.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Note that Mr. Coates mentions a moral debt, not just a monetary debt. I think the whole gist of all of Mr. Coates’s articles about reparations is calling for someone in government, preferable a White lawmaker, to take the call for reparations seriously, to acknowledge to the Black community that yes, we stole and plundered from you, our riches are a result of what we stole from you, from your labor, from your personhood, and to take the risk of coming right out and saying yes, you deserve reparations (even if that just means paying actual reparations to victims who are still alive).

        However, it seems lawmakers are afraid of the R word, for fear that it would commit them to making actual monetary compensation. They are lawyers, after all. Instead, we get a lot of hemming and hawing.

        Even here on this blog, we continue to split hairs about reparations and making excuses — Are they possible? But most of the victims are dead. Doesn’t affirmative action level the playing field? – and so on.

        Maybe we should come right out and just say, yes, you deserve reparations. Period.

        I still think it’s more about principle than anything.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        It’s almost as though people are afraid of saying unequivocally that they support reparations for the Black community, for fear they might actually be made to pay them back.

        I think that’s what angers Mr. Coates.

        Mr. Sanders is not even willing to make an empty campaign promise about reparations.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        “Dare to be Divisive”

      • tuttabellamia says:

        What Mr. Coates wants is for Mr. Sanders to “tell it like it is,” to acknowledge that the problems of the Black community are not due to poverty, but to White supremacy.

        Mr. Coates keeps stressing IMAGINATION, as in: “Radicals expand the political imagination and, hopefully, prevent incrementalism from becoming a virtue.”

        That’s why I think this is more about principle, about simply CONSIDERING the idea of reparations.

        He chides Mr. Sanders for lacking imagination when it comes to reparations. You will note that when asked if he supported “reparations for slavery,” Mr. Sanders’s immediate answer was NO, and he then proceeded to offer substitutes. I say “substitutes,” because he could have replied, yes, I support reparations, and they consist of providing free education, etc. But the fact that he said no to reparations is a sign that he does not consider free education a part of the reparations package. He clearly sees reparations as something else.

      • 1mime says:

        You are correct, Tutta. What exactly does “reparation” mean?

      • MassDem says:

        Tutta, you summed this up better than I could. I see Coates’s point here as similar to the rejection of the slogan “All Lives Matter” by BLM because it trivializes the actual experiences of black people, especially black men. Sanders is doing that here by just shutting the conversation on reparations down without considering any of the history behind them, what they could look like etc.

      • flypusher says:

        When Mr Coates broached the subject of reparations last year, I recall he was using the notion of some kind of monetary reparation as a “hook”. The real thrust of the article, iirc, was to set up our own version of a “Truth & Reconcilliation” commission, starting with funding the needed scholarship to produce a more exact accounting of what was stolen from Black people over the centuries. It terms of $ costs per person, White America ought to jump on this offer; it’s much cheaper than having to pay individual Black people. But in terms of the psychic costs, those are high. The price is a lot of cherished myths, a lot of pride, a lot of what we wrongly thought was our shining exceptional history, a lot of tradition, a lot of very painful self-reflection. Too many people don’t want to pay that price, but I see no way to move on until we do.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Mime and MassDem, I would say to Mr. Coates, “Yes, you are right, the Black community deserves reparations for all the harm inflicted on them past and present. What do you suggest we do?”

        First of all, that would show respect and an openness to at least hear him out, and it would help to have some idea as to what he truly means by “reparations,” and how he suggests we go about it, instead of making assumptions.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Well said, Fly. It’s about owning up about what was stolen from them, in clear figures if possible, meant to be sobering and not just acknowledging in vague terms and then immediately dismissing all the harm done with the wave of a hand.

        What we have in place now that would be forms of reparations– affirmative action and other government programs — are seen more as handouts instead of a giving back of what was stolen, and so, even if the monetary debt is being paid to a certain extent, the moral debt is not, because these forms of reparations are considered undeserved and Blacks continue to be stigmatized.

      • 1mime says:

        That’s a great point, Tutta, that current reparations such as affirmative action (under consideration now at SCOTUS in the U/TX case) and other government assistance being criticized if not outright scorned by those who see all such help as hand outs. THIS is what has to change….you can throw all the money in the world at reparations and if attitudes and actions don’t change, what have you really achieved?

        I’m with Ryan on this one: Let those who would receive reparations define what they think is important and needed by Black people? Surely, they know better than most White people. Mostly, they want to be treated fairly, with dignity, and provided with equal access to a quality education and job opportunity, good health care, and a way to escape the cycle of poverty that many live within. We have structured our welfare aid so narrowly that it penalizes people from working and then we criticize them when they don’t! I read yesterday in the Houston Chronicle that in TX, you cannot qualify for Medicaid if your monthly – MONTHLY- income exceeds $370.00 for a family of 3 persons!!!! Furthermore, you won’t qualify for subsidies for the ACA if your income exceeds a dollar amount that is basically at poverty level. Then there is the whole S.C. ruling on making medicaid expansion optional at the state level. Those who thought Chief Justice Roberts “saved” the ACA are missing how he really sabotaged it.

        These things need to change. Peoples’ minds and hearts need to open. This is wrong, but let’s begin not with throwing money at people, let’s hear their stories and make life today, tolerable and hopeful.

      • As I have said before – reparations are not a good idea
        The victors and victims are all DEAD – the Romans invented a “statute of limitations” for a very good reason – you can’t go back you just make more victims
        What would you do with somebody descended from a slave and a slaveholder?
        Then any “reparations” based on race will just reinforce prejudice

        What you could do is have “reparations for past injustices” and deliver them economically
        Pay them to the poor – all the poor

        Which I believe is Bernies take on the problem as well

      • Crogged says:

        Thank you Rome, for the statute of limitations, thank you London, for the concept of ‘equity’. We are talking about a damage which sounds in law and in equity. Yes, the victors and victims of slavery are dead, the children of men and women unable to buy a home and thus deliver the most common American means of creating and passing an economic estate-capital-real f___g money– are still here. Part of the creation of a minimum income society would be a specific reference to this past which stole from people solely based on a completely arbitrary way of dividing the human species. There is no black race or white race or culture of poverty, these are all useless abstractions.

      • flypusher says:

        Duncan, I agree that making actual payments to Black people isn’t practical, for those very reasons. “40 acres and a mule” needed to be done in the late 1860s-1880s. That opportunity is gone. But we can’t even get a substantial portion of our White population to even acknowledge what happened. Here is a really egregious example:

        The questions some of those tourists asked are simply mind-blowing. We have a huge failure to educate, and we can’t heal this national birth defect of ours when it is covered in so much ignorance.

      • goplifer says:

        ***now when it relates to reparations he is suddenly practical and concerned about divisiveness.***

        That is the point exactly. All of a sudden this mischievous gnome who is otherwise brimming with bizarre, impractical ideas discovers a need for pragmatism. This is what I mean when I say that Sander’s nomination would be a kick in the gut to the Democratic Party’s most loyal constituency.

        My God how I wish the Republican were fielding a credible candidate this year.

      • 1mime says:

        I’m beginning to wonder if “a credible (GOP) candidate” would make a dent, Lifer.

      • flypusher says:

        “My God how I wish the Republican were fielding a credible candidate this year.”

        I think most if not all of the people who post here share that sentiment.

        I may end up voting in the Dem primary if it ends up being close come the beginning of March. We’ll see.

      • Crogged says:

        Let’s pick a number and say it was thirty years ago that Andrew Sullivan championed the idea of ‘gay’ marriage. If you could put your mind back into the box most of us were mired in 1985 about these completely marginalized and misunderstood people, it would help you understand to an even greater detail, the absolute frustration of people who want to call themselves ‘black’ and be treated equally and equitably. Liberty is easy, equality is hard and a democracy needs both.

      • 1mime says:

        Absolutely, Crogged. As much as we (White people) try to understand and empathize with what Black people have endured, there really is no way to get close. But we must try, and we can’t quit.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        I propose that we do what Mr. Coates suggests — set aside our pragmatism for a moment and let our imaginations run wild and come up with some really outrageous ideas about how to make reparations, really go for it, think big, instead of thinking incrementally.

      • 1mime says:

        It would be an interesting exercise, Tutta, to develop a parallel list of initiatives, etc that would be appropriate and helpful as perceived by Whites and by Blacks. Since so much of America’s policies and laws are driven by a White majority (in Congress and in the state legislatures), it is time that more attention and opportunity be encouraged by those who have suffered and would benefit from specific proposals.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        You’re right, Mime. As we previously discussed, we should start with the Black community making their own suggestions and proposals. This is about them, not us.

      • 1mime says:

        You’ll appreciate this piece on reactions of those on southern tours about slavery. Like you said, there is a serious disconnect on the issue of Black treatment.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Frankly, Mime, I often feel embarrassed to be discussing how best to help the Black community. I feel like it’s not my place to be rattling off about other people’s business, as if I’m some expert about the Black community. I feel like a busybody.

      • duncancairncross says:

        I am even further from your black community but I’m wiling to put my tuppence worth in

        There are two separate issues
        Who pays and what they pay
        Who gains and what they gain

        My suggestion would be a “Wealth Tax” – all wealth no matter how it was earned
        Use a progressive scale starting at $1m with increasing percentages up to 20% at $1B

        Who gains?
        I would suggest all US citizens – split the money up equally among all 300 million of you

        As far as the “Wealth Tax” is concerned you should also put an ownership requirement
        If an asset can not be linked to an actual person – through a maximum number of steps – then that asset should be considered to be “found money” and be owned by the state (which should add it to the pot)

        In some ways I believe that it would be better if the state kept the assets a (rather than dividing them among the citizens) to provide an income for the citizens rather than a lump sum
        But I think the simple division would suit the US “character” better

      • Crogged says:

        There’s no need of ‘address the black community’. Acknowledge the harm and directly give them the cash via a guaranteed minimum income which will allow the recipient to decide how to address their own vexing problems.

        Yes, divisive. Why’s that cracker getting it too? Not a chance in hell of passing right now.

        Because America has a long history of loving, but not liking, its immigrants except for those blessed Pilgrims.

        We’ve tried giving coupons for food (some food, not that good stuff) administered by hoards of administrators, depending on the kindness of emergency rooms for medical care and far too long worried about the well being of Mr. Trump making it with the stakes received from his diddy all those years ago.

        A rising tide lifts all boats. We are the tide.

      • Crogged says:

        You beat me Duncan-well done.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        I was also thinking in terms of a basic income but to call it something like “debt repayment,” or “settlement funds,” so it doesn’t sound like a handout. Nomenclature is important.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        So y’all come up with the plan, and I will come up with the name. I am into words.

      • 1mime says:

        Tutta, since you’re into “words”, this irony will make you smile: stocks are called “equities” on the market…….Now, few poor folks own equities, so maybe that will offer you an interesting reversal on a term that would beautifully apply to reparations, except that the term has already been attributed for those stock things that poor people can’t afford to buy (-:

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Lifer, I don’t think you have to worry about Bernie Sanders shutting out the Black vote. Mr. Coates does not speak for the entire Black community, and I doubt their vote will depend on whether Mr. Sanders supports reparations. Has Hillary Clinton called for reparations?

        Black Democrats will start out by supporting Mrs. Clinton. If she were to lose the nomination to Mr. Sanders, they would support Sanders, especially when Mrs. Clinton endorses Sanders. I don’t see them crossing over to the Republican side, especially if Mr. Trump is the nominee. The Black community is practical.

        Even intellectuals like Mr. Coates would probably turn pragmatic and support Mr. Sanders if he is the nominee. I don’t see them crossing over to the Republican side either.

        I wonder if intellectuals like Thomas Sowell will stay with the Republican Party if Mr. Trump is the nominee. I could see him crossing over to the Democratic side in this instance.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Actually, I’m more inclined to support a post-secondary educational plan, free of charge, maybe with some basic income thrown in for financial support.

        Education is key, not only for employment purposes, but to expand the students’ imagination, to dream big.

    • Ryan Ashfyre says:

      As things stand, Sen. Sanders stands absolutely no chance of getting the Democratic nomination, and articles like this prove it. He keeps trying to deflect difficult questions back into his broader economic message, even if it means he didn’t really answer the question at all. That won’t and hasn’t gone unnoticed by people and it’s going to cost him.

      But onto the more important topic of reparations. First of all, I’ll come out and say that I don’t like using that word, for one reason. It can’t be done. Seriously. Someone comment and tell me how in the world do we compensate African-Americans for all the untold sufferings and absolute barbarism that America committed, because I don’t see how that happens. Those are scars that will never heal and so calling it “reparations” comes across, to me, as a double-edged sword; saying on one hand that there needs to be compensation and true and lasting equality given to the African-American community to sever the vestiges of white supremacy in this country (something which I absolutely agree with), but on the other making the implication there can never be any true reparation, which is true, and so there will continue to be a certain divide between peoples on this, which is contrary to the idea of true equality, IMO.

      Now, as far as housing discrimination goes, I am 100% for making that right, but how do you do that? Essentially, I think the foundation should be passing a federal minimum income and giving many of these families the security they need out of poverty so that they can build up the capital they need to buy those kinds of homes, if they so choose.

      There’s also matters of education, policing, college affordability and graduation, criminal records and they how affect a person’s ability to get a job, etc, etc, all of which are much too complex to get into on a single post here.

      That said however, if nothing else, HRC is going to be more in tune with these issues than Sen. Sanders is. No matter how he tries, it’s much too late for him to garner the kind of support from the communities he needs he needs to carry him through to the nomination.

    • Griffin says:

      Black intellectuals are also critical of Clinton because of her earlier support for the War on Drugs and “tough on crime” laws in general. It doesn’t mean they still wouldn’t support her over a Republican. If anything I take this as Coates trying to shift a perceieved ally even more firmly into his camp, as it would be pointless to write this article about a Republican nominee who wouldn’t try to make any sort of concession.

    • 1mime says:

      I am trying to look outside the carnival of current campaign politics at what is quietly happening behind the scenes in Congress.

      The GOP, to their everlasting credit, are trying to broker a deal on international corporate tax reform, that would encourage companies to repatriate offshore profits. Our current economic volatility is providing the impetus for a renewed effort to address this area. This is clearly not an unselfish move on the part of Republicans as business interests are an important constituency for them. And, tax reform if fairly done, is desirable, as are other critical areas of our nation’s business.

      There is a stark contrast in the dearth of interest by Republicans to address the huge problem of income disparity that millions of Americans are experiencing. This problem that is getting worse, not better, and is equally deserving of Congressional attention. Americans who fall into this growing sector of people are barely making ends meet – if they even can find work – they don’t offer the tantalizing carrot of “offshore profits” – they are sitting on unpaid bills and living desperate lives. If we “fix” the top side while ignoring the bottom group, what is really being accomplished that isn’t a continuation of rewarding the upper tier of America’s society?

      This quote from Representative Kevin Brady illustrates where Republican priorities are being focused: “Brady said Wednesday that shrinking corporate earnings and stagnating pay underscore the urgent need to overhaul parts of the tax code.”

      I’m hopeful that the part of this statement that might relate to individual financial problems, the “stagnating pay” aspect is more than lip service to this serious problem….I’m also interested to see what specific policy changes he’s going to propose – if any – in this area. The discussion I have been reading has focused on corporate tax reform with the old “trickle down” economics benefits as the default solution for stagnating incomes. It hasn’t worked and substantive solutions to this problem are just as imperative as is corporate tax reform.

      It would be nice to see a balanced effort by Republican leadership for both problems. I’ve tuned out of much of the campaign rhetoric and refocused on this other development. It may be just as futile, but it is every bit as important.

  19. flypusher says:

    Pot may not make you stupid, but these people look to have found something that does:

    Yeah, how DARE anyone POLITICIZE a city’s water supply getting contaminated with lead because we should only politicize important stuff like BENGHAZI!!!

    GOP wants to sweep it under the rug, Dems lack enough spine to be effective, people are screwed.

      • 1mime says:

        I believe all those who denounce or deny the truth about what happened to the people of Flint, MI, should be required to drink the water.

      • flypusher says:

        What a gem this Patterson guy is, jeeez! I would be shocked about this, except that my shock capacity was preempted by those dregs of humanity who promote Sandy Hook trutherism.

      • 1mime says:

        The Flint, MI story is going to get uglier. Politico offers yet another view of what went wrong, who made what decisions, and how this tragedy will derail Synder’s future GOP opportunities. I noted that most GOP analysts said his future was toast, but a couple said that he, like Christie (Bridgegate) could overcome it with time. Unfortunately, lead poisoning in bodies is not so easily resolved.

        I was amused that Synder plans to appeal Pres. Obama’s decision to NOT declare Flint, Mi a major federal disaster so that more money would be available to the state to deal with this problem. What the President did do was approve a $5Million grant and FEMA assistance. Federal disaster designations are for “natural” disasters. Flint’s situation was caused by decisions made by state officials. As much sympathy as I have for the people hurt by this problem, the state made this mess and they need to accept full responsibility for dealing with it, including the cost. Why should federal taxpayer revenue be tapped for irresponsible decisions of state officials? This is such a tragedy.

      • Rob Ambrose says:

        Typical GOP “critical thinking”.

        Ignore the dozens of tox reports showing hugely elevated lead levels in children, but swallow completely one guy who says he drank the water and is fine.

        Scumbags, all of them.

      • 1mime says:

        This oped in the NYT comes from a Republican who was born in Flint, MI. He takes his GOP brothers and sisters to task for their lack of interest and commitment to help the poor people in Flint and other cities struggling with the same problems. He notes that many formerly industrialized areas have died leaving those who remain without services and a semblance of normal life.

        Of interest is his statement that despite his protestations, Gov. Synder appointed the county managers who were in agreement with switching the city’s water supply to Flint River.
        “The water switch was intended to save $5 million over two years. But even after residents complained about the water, and even after the City Council voted to switch back to Detroit for its water, the Snyder-appointed manager said no.”

        One would think that the fact that the manager was appointed by Snyder also embues the governor with responsibility (if not culpability….that is being researched) for how the state responded to repeated reports of serious problems with the water.

        “I do not for a moment question the sincerity of those voices in the party who call for a new approach to persistent poverty or who seek to welcome African-Americans and others into the fold. I don’t believe it’s impossible for conservatives to help a place like Flint. But first you have to show up.”

        Indeed. I bet the Black community is wondering the same thing.

    • Stephen says:

      One of my skills is water treatment and I hold the highest license of my state. I cannot believe that the utility did this willingly. They were overridden by the politicians to save money and the heck with the customers. It is relatively easy to adjust the water’s PH by a variety of means. And knowing that mains used had lead in them that would leach out with low PH water must of been known by city engineers. Governor Snyder appointed the city manager to oversee the city. He is ultimately responsible and should be removed from office.

      • 1mime says:

        I wish FEMA would use you as a special investigator for this problem, Stephen. Your experience and integrity would certainly increase public awareness and accountability for what really happened.

        As to removing Synder from office…..if it can be proven that any official, appointed and/or elected knowingly misrepresented the pathogens and toxins in the water, shouldn’t there be criminal charges in addition to removal from office?

  20. Creigh says:

    It’s not in the link roundup, but today (?) the Supreme court agreed to examine the Administration’s Executive Order on immigration. Any thoughts?

    • 1mime says:

      Hopes, yes, Creigh. The kids who were brought here as babies or young children know only America. I believe they should be grandfathered. Closure is necessary to their status so they can have full rights to vote, etc. Their parents who came illegally are more troublesome to me, but how do you split up families who’ve been here for years, staying out of trouble, working, paying taxes….That’s going to be a tougher question to resolve. America has immigration rules which are clearly not working. My “hope” is that the SCOTUS decision will help point the way without legislating a solution from the bench. My plea is for Congress to act on the Senate immigration plan.

    • MassDem says:

      The issue of standing is interesting here. Apparently Texas is arguing that the state is harmed because it subsidizes drivers licenses to legal residents, and if Obama’s Executive Order stands, then the state is on the hook for a lot of new licenses, which will be expensive. Here are some links that I read to learn about this:

      I don’t know if Texas just has to show harm in this one instance, or whether the administration can show that overall, the presence of Dreamers is a net positive for the state. I personally hope SCOTUS upholds the Executive Order since Congress has refused to act, but it is hard to predict how this Court will rule.

      • Creigh says:

        Interesting perspective on the standing issue, which I hadn’t considered. Drivers license costs would seem to be a pretty unsympathetic reason to challenge the law, but you go to court with what you’ve got, I guess.

        Since the Administration asked for a quick review, it looks to me that they see a win either way the SC decides. If it’s in their favor fine, if not it’s a political weapon. One hopes that the SC would take a serious look at executive orders, instead of just this particular executive order. It looks increasingly bad when courts issue opinions and say “but don’t use this as a precedent.” Chief Justice Roberts was wrong when he said the job was “calling balls and strikes.” The SC’s job is to say what the law is.

      • 1mime says:

        Most important, Creigh, the job of the SC is NOT to MAKE law….Scalia is so overtly political in public that the SC has lost its image of impartiality. The focus is away from constitutional renderings and towards legislating. That’s wrong.

        I have no clue how this will turn out, but in the absolute absence of action by Congress on the issue of immigration, something has to happen. The Republican delegation doesn’t want to upset their base by passing any legislation, therefore they refuse to act on the one bi-partisan Senate bill that could address the problem. The tragedy are the young people who were brought illegally to the U.S. as babies. Many are nearing voting age and wanting to drive and seek employment legally, and they are in limbo, or maybe a more precise term would be “purgatory”.

        Executive orders shouldn’t be necessary, but this Congress hasn’t been doing its job which has forced the President to at least try to get something done.

    • flypusher says:

      Was listening to a discussion of the case on the Diand Rehm show this morning. There’s also a separation of powers issue. Of course nothing’s stopping Congress from actually drafting legislation on immigration, except petty partisan politics.

      • MassDem says:

        The suit is being brought by states, and they need to show direct harm. Although the separation of powers is the real issue, it’s probably not one on which the states have standing.

      • 1mime says:

        In thinking about states showing “harm”, I wonder how much harm would be caused to states from removal of all the “illegal” immigrants who are not only providing cheap labor but also spends every dollar they make in the U.S. economy….contributing to the local sales tax base and payroll taxes when businesses don’t hire them under the table.

      • flypusher says:

        According to the interview, the separation issue is something one or more of the Justices decided to include in their review of the case, in addition to the grievances of the States.

    • Creigh says:

      Here’s a link that explains some of the issues and outlines the dilemma for the court, particularly for the Chief Justice.

      It kind of looks like it might have been the liberal Justices who voted to hear the case (needs 4, and they are never named), looking to overturn the 5th Circuit’s ruling.

      • Creigh says:

        The opinions should make for interesting reading, though. Justice Scalia’s are often quite pointed. How to square this with the Unitary Executive theory, next time that is needed?

  21. 1mime says:

    Nate Silver weighs in on the Democratic primary and what he sees ahead. You may be surprised at his less than rosy view. Of course, now that Palin has endorsed Trump, things may look better for him……(-:

    • goplifer says:

      That’s because of one factor: Sanders is the least vetted major figure in the race on either side.

      • 1mime says:

        I know you have strong feelings about Sanders’ viability which made Nate Silver’s remarks more striking. I hope the Democrats don’t screw this up. I’m generously offering to let the Republicans have full honors in that department (-:

      • Creigh says:

        I was going to object to your “least vetted” characterization on the grounds that he’s not a very complicated character so vetting isn’t likely to turn up any issues. But I’ll admit that his policy proposals might not stand up to vetting as well as his personal integrity does.

      • 1mime says:

        And, the other candidates’ proposals? How well do they stand up? That’s not in defense of Sanders rather, it’s an acknowledgement that it sure is easy to “propose”….but, “governing” is hard..

      • goplifer says:

        The general voting public knows as much about Bernie Sanders as they did about Ben Carson a couple of months ago. Review the “favorability” curve for Carson for a preview of what will happen to Red Bernie if he emerges from the Democratic sausage-maker as the nominee.

      • Griffin says:

        Ben Carson was consistantly saying objectively insane/bizarre things. You just disagree with Sanders on matters of opinion. It took Carson being totally whacked out of his mind for his favorablilty to plumet so quickly, I don’t think the same will happen with Sanders, even when they try to dig up thirty year old dirt on him.

      • 1mime says:

        I am on record here as supporting HRC because she is not only more experienced in more areas than Sanders, but her skills are better suited for the global issues the incoming President will have to deal with. She will work more effectively within the system because of her wide experience. Having acknowledged this, I do believe that Bernie Sanders is a good man, has many fine ideas and is resonating BECAUSE of his ideas, not “in spite of them” a la Trump. If he is able to snatch the Democratic nomination from Hillary, I will vote for him and work to see him elected. To infer that Bernie is “red” is a gross misstatement of his stated beliefs. It is fair to criticize him for his policies and how he plans to pay for them.

      • Griffin says:

        @1mime And that’s a perfectly defendable position, and if Hillary is the nominee I will vote for her and try to mobilize my friends to vote as well (though in California my vote doesn’t matter much beyond the local level anyways). However I think Lifer’s gone a little over the top in terms of thinking Sanders is as crazy as Cruz/Trump, will destroy the US economy, will lose to Trump,and single-handedly shatter the Democratic Party into bits and pieces.

        I think it’s because he hates social democracy more than Cruz’s plans, because if social democracy is implemented it would be pracitically impossible to implement an “ownership society” becuase we would emulate Western Europe, which Lifer feels is stagnate, whereas if Cruz/Trump burn everything to the ground the center-right can still build on the ash left behind. Basically I think he feels having fifty years of mediocrity (what he considers mediocrity) would be worse than just eight years of painful stupidity.

    • Sir Magpie De Crow says:

      Donald Trump and Sarah Palin. Together as the new political powerhouse couple. Reminds me of a TV episode I once watched. It was from the Batman: Animated Series story arc when Lex Luthor and the Joker decided to team up. I imagine this latest pairing will be similarly destructive.

    • Crogged says:

      Mr. Silver’s point wasn’t ‘people like Sanders’, but, ‘people HATE Trump’.

      And why couldn’t they have arranged Sarah’s endorsement to happen at Liberty University? I mean, are we trying to set off the ultimate weapon, the doomsday blow it all up and start over Irony Bomb? Sarah Palin walked away from public service in order to cash in, Mr. Trump is trying to turn the Presidency into a reality show.

      This all plays out in the media and on the internet. I suppose I’m a bit of a loner and/or stuck in my own life, but only one person I’ve run across in the last year said, “Trump, why not?”.

  22. flypusher says:

    The gloves are really off now between Ted and the Donald. Looks like Trump just picked up that coveted Palin endorsement!!

    • 1mime says:

      Hmm, wonder what enticement Trump offered to Palin for her endorsement? That woman has a price for everything…..Strange bedfellows.

    • Rob Ambrose says:

      The fact that Palin is a coveted endorsement endorsement tells one everything they need to know about the current state of the conservative movement.

      I’m watching The Palin/Trump speech on CNN right now and I’m literally shaking my head in disbelief.

      Palin is spewing a nonsensical stream of word salad, placing the wrong emphasis on pretty much every second word. She did hit all the talking points though (even using the term “gravy train”). Some genuinely terrifying sabre rattling.

      Trump doesn’t even give a speech, or discuss policies or anything. He literally goes up there and talk about the latest polls, talk about how amazing he is, and how much of a loser everyone else is. The Angry Sweet Potato hasn’t discussed anything even remotely connected to a policy. And this

      What an embarrassment this is.

      • 1mime says:

        They deserve eachother.

      • texan5142 says:

        Does anyone here have a Palinize decoder so I can decipher what that stupid, vapid bitch said.

      • texan5142 says:

        Palin said,

        “Trump’s candidacy has exposed, not just that tragic — that ramifications of the betrayal of a transformation of our country, but, two, he has exposed the complicity on both sides of the aisle that has enabled it, OK?”

        What the hell does that even mean.

      • 1mime says:

        Hey, maybe Palin is pushing for a second shot at VEEP (-:

      • flypusher says:

        It sounds angry, and that’s what counts.

      • unarmedandunafraid says:

        I GOT IT!!!!. Palin uses a Wheel of Fortune before and after phrase generator to write her speeches. Like “This president of the United States is a nocturnal primate.” And the answer would be “George Bush Baby.” Because George Bush is a president, and a “bush baby” is a nocturnal primate. It all fits.

  23. goplifer says:

    Had an interesting experience today. A post I wrote for the Houston Chronicle blog highlighting Texas’ continuing celebration of “Confederate Heroes Day” on MLK weekend was picked up an extreme white nationalist forum. Clicking on that link was…interesting.

    Here’s the post the Chronicle:

  24. 1mime says:

    Let’s focus on how lefties talk about racism……The fantasy character, Bob, doesn’t sell with me. It is much more likely that “Bob” would be attacked by those who challenge his equanimity, than by those who would claim he isn’t “anti-racist” enough – especially in areas where conservative views dominate. You cannot talk honestly about racism without including structural problems – justice, law enforcement, educational opportunity, employment equality, etc. Policy changes can make significant improvements here but the tougher battleground revolves around personal attitudes, which are far more difficult to change. There are nuanced differences and huge, glaring differences in how people approach the complexities of race, especially in the political maelstrom of today. I have great confidence in our young people, the Millennial generation, to get it right and teach all of us through their example.

    Time will even out the rough edges, but, in the interim, it is important to take what concrete structural steps that are possible and necessary to promote greater tolerance, justice and fairness. However one dissects the issue of racism, the need for change structurally and individually are important to bring about change. I submit that those who fear or reject inclusion have much more work to do in this area than those who embrace diversity.

    • tuttabellamia says:

      I do think that sometimes we are too self-conscious about race. I’m not saying we should deny that racism exists, only that the idea of race and racism seems to pervade our thoughts, no matter what “side” we’re on. I want to be able to have a conversation with or about someone and not automatically think of them in terms of what race they are, or whether they are racist.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Mime, as you pointed out a while back, our society has become excessively judgmental, and I would add that we’ve also become excessively defensive, thanks to the 24/7 news cycle and social media, with all its intense online discussions which consist essentially of trashing others. I wish we could all relax and make eye contact with each other and smile and see each other through an unbiased lens, without all the baggage that comes from being on social media.

      • flypusher says:

        On some of the left wing sites I frequent there is regular acrimony about White people helping the wrong way and so many of the arguments are about the most piddly things. That’s the sort of thing I’m not going to ever trouble myself over.

      • 1mime says:

        I agree, Fly. Each of us has to arrive at our personal value system and live it without regret. Some may live it quietly; others may need or want to be more demonstrative. It depends upon what one’s circumstances are. We are all enriched through diversity and inclusion. It really shouldn’t be such a big deal.

      • Sir Magpie De Crow says:

        It’s a little hard for me to not be so self-conscience of racism, discrimination and mindlessly cruel bigotry when I was told by a undercover cop (or possibly a fake cop/Geaorge Zimmerman wannabe) who recently harassed me as I was heading to a bus stop a block from my own home… accusing me of being a thief and ordering me to drop my own belongings. For the trouble I caused him of not fitting whatever flawed stereotype he had of me he later derisively said I should have stayed home. As if there is a rule/law that undesirables like me have no right at night to ride public transportation to travel to a local mall to work on a commissioned project, quietly in back of a bookstore. I had my plans, my valuable time and peace of mind ruined for what? You really seem to have no idea or apparently very little empathy for the endless unreported acts of humiliation or the real life peril minorities face every day due to a segment of the population who are frankly not much more evolved from the mentality of Bull Connor or Jesse Helms… or even 1950’s era William F. Buckley. No idea.

      • 1mime says:

        I think Swoozie lays it out there pretty well in the 2016 google youtube interview. I enjoyed hearing all of the conversations but if you want to have a better idea as to the frustration shared especially by black males, fast forward to Swoozie, his piece starts at about 4 minutes into the video.

      • Tuttabella says:

        I wouldn’t say I have absolutely NO idea. I’m Hispanic myself and will occasionally get extra scrutiny in stores, and I was once stopped and questioned by a security guard because he thought I had stolen a lipstick. I calmly explained my situation, and he let me go. And I had a serious, 5-year romantic relationship with a Black man, and we encountered certain negative reactions when we were together.

        My point was that I don’t think we should be so self-conscious about race as to always have it on one’s mind, to see everything through the prism of race. I think we should be able to see a person and just see a person, not a Black person, or a Hispanic person (unless it’s relevant to the conversation, as it is here.) That’s not the same as denying that racism exists.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Can any of us really say we understand the plight of Black men? Mime posts a You Tube video and wow, she really gets it, right? Lifer, a privileged White man, writes a throughtful blog and displays the appropriate guilt, and he is commended. Such fine Friends of Blacks. Meanwhile, I, a Hispanic lady once involved with a Black man, don’t show the appropriate empathy or say the right words, and somehow I have no clue and now I am the enemy of Blacks.

        There is a big difference seeing people as “others” and having lived among them.

      • 1mime says:

        Tutta. I’m not claiming great knowledge about the Black experience, only that I care deeply about the injustices Black people and other minorities and the poor have endured by those in positions of power and position. I believe it’s important to speak out against injustice. Last night, as I watched the 2016 Google Youtube video interview of President Obama, I was moved by Swoozie’s heart-felt comments and frustrations about his personal experiences as a Black male. The parallel to Sir Magpie’s comments couldn’t have been more clear, therefore, I linked the video. Few White people ever encounter situations like this and it is important that we try to understand how it makes a person feel. Your life experience no doubt has taught you many things about diversity and I am glad you shared some of them. No judgement was intended.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        I admit I haven’t faced a whole lot of discrimination or profiling, perhaps because I’m very fair-skinned, but I notice when I’m overweight and dress sloppily I get more scrutiny from storeowners. And i know my ex, who was Black, had to deal with a lot. So maybe I really don’t understand, because I’m not a Black man, but then, do progressives like Lifer really understand, to the extent that they can judge me?

      • tuttabellamia says:

        And another thing — as many of you already know, my current love is a White man who sometimes flies the Confederate flag yet doesn’t have a racist bone in his body. Go figure. He marches to the beat of his own drum. Go ahead and judge me for that as well. All I can say is you can’t truly know anyone unless you meet them in person. Simple as that.

      • Turtles Run says:

        Thats right Tutt. He also has no issue with unarmed Black teenagers being gunned for walking down streets and believes that segregation is really freedom.

        He’s not a racist but is OK with racist beliefs. You know him better than any of us but the impression he left here was not the greatest.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Fair enough, Turtles. You can only go by what you see here.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        I do thank you for having spoken out against the revelation of the personal information. I wouldn’t do that to my worst enemy, not matter how much I might detest him/her.

    • Bobo Amerigo says:

      In a couple of earlier blogs, a book called the authoritarians is referenced.

      I read it, trying to understand the journey — depressing to me — a close friend has been on.

      One point the author makes is about judgment and familiarity. Apparently authoritarians can become less conforming and judgmental about different types of people simply through familiarization. My friend, for example, became accepting, even approving, of same-sex marriage because he got to know a woman in that kind of relationship.

      To me, the familiarity message means lessening discrimination is on us.

      If all our friends are of one race, we’ve got to expand our circle of friends and socialize with all of them. If our employer hires primarily one race, we have to figure out how to make change.

      I think it’s on us to vanquish The Other’s other-ness. Policy can only do so much.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Agreed. And familiarization with “others” would likely result in more support for policy changes that would help those “others.”

      • 1mime says:

        Agree, Tutta. Inclusion tends to blur discomfort and leads to acceptance of a whole range of differences that can be celebrated rather than feared or reviled.

  25. flypusher says:

    To touch on some of the other topics:

    The cyber-warfare thing is something I could ISIS realistically trying in the near future, in terms of attacking the US. More potential disruption bang for your buck than trying to radicalize alienated American youth.

    As for the pot study, it would be nice to have our lawmakers yield to common sense. Heavy long term use of ANY drug is not good for you. Keep the stuff away from kids
    but let the adults make their own choices.

  26. Rob Ambrose says:

    OK OK, so Two Corinthians walk into a bar, right….

  27. johngalt says:

    The support evangelicals are showing Trump is dumbfounding. He is an unreligious, arrogant hedonist on his third wife. He’s super rich (as we’ve heard him brag), but I never hear anything about Trump philanthropy. I doubt he has darkened the door of a church beyond weddings and funerals in his adult life prior to this campaign. And he’s their choice? Just how dumb are these people?

  28. MassDem says:

    Maybe DeRay McKesson could speak to poor, sensitive white people in a way that spares our tender feelings. Here he is discussing white privilege with Stephen Colbert.

  29. rightonrush says:

    One of my nephews said he heard that Trump thought the hymn “How Great Thou Art” was referring to him.

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