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Samantha's Journal
Samantha's Journal
February 16, 2016

What about this person being nominated for the Supreme Court?

She graduated from Radcliffe College and Columbia Law School. She would be a distinguished choice.



February 14, 2016

Superdelegates offsetting the results of primaries is unconstitutional IMHO

I had been thinking how can this possibly be legal when the Constitution specifically delegates the right to run Presidential elections to the individual states, not to political parties. I found there were many people who believe kicking aside a candidate who prevails via acquiring the most legitimate votes in primary contests to usher in another candidate better suited to there preferences is unconstitutional.

Here is one example:

Superdelgate Intervention Unconstitutional

Even critics of superdelegate deals tend to underestimate the gravity of the issue. In its very essence, the superdelegate system is unconstitutional. It destroys the right of primary voters to choose their own nominee. It offends the principle of one person one vote. In three primary cases (Nixon v. Herndon, 1927, Nixon v. Condon, 1932, Smith v. Allwright, 1944) the Supreme Court affirmed that the right to vote in a primary (a right which includes the right to be counted and respected), is protected by the Constitution. Officials cannot legally circumvent the vote. These were discrimination cases, but the arguments apply directly to the superdelegate situation in the Democratic primary.

Up to a point, a political party is master of its own house. But no party, or group within a party, can legally tamper with primary results. In Terry v. Adams (1953), the Court ruled against the "Jay Bird Association," a group of powerful white Democrats who tried to create a private enforcement process within the Democratic primary. Justice Clark ruled that "any part of the machinery for choosing officials becomes subject to the Constitution's restraints."

The superdelegate system flouts the very purpose for which primaries were conceived. "Fighting" Bob LaFollette, the Wisconsin progressive who organized the first primaries in 1903, hated boss-controlled conventions. The aim of the primaries is to remove the nominations from the hands of professionals and the wealthy donors whom professionals obey. The superdelegate issue should not be resolved through deals or negotiations. The integrity of elections is not negotiable. The superdelegate system deserves to be abolished.


I hope Bernie Sanders seeks a Constitutional lawyer's advice on this subject, if he hasn't already.


February 11, 2016

This is a such a beautiful, eloquent post

I said at the time I could not support any politician that signed the petition giving Bush the authority to wage a preeminent war on Iraq. I did not believe either him or Cheney on this subject, and I felt if I, a nobody, could see the truth of the whole matter -- it was all about the oil and Bush* wanting to eliminate Saddam for trying to kill George H.W. Bush -- certainly elected politicians should be able to see the hoax as well.

I had never cried at work, but the day our military crossed the desert and I watched those tanks racing across the sand, I watched a large screen in a large conference room display our soldiers heading toward Iraq to invade. I couldn't move, I just stood there with tears coming down my face. Finally, in sadness I walked away thinking that as an American, I too would be seen as responsible for the war, and I just could not handle that. I have always been a Pacifist, and like Bernie, I think war should be waged only as a last resort -- for instance when we were attacked during World War II.

Apologizing for a vote does not erase the horror of what we did to the Iraqi people. There is simply no way to ever make right what we did to that Country and to its people. God forgive us, because we have no right to ask the Iraqi people for forgiveness.


February 8, 2016

Some time ago I started thinking what if Will's death had been staged

A "rational" explanation might come from the fact that his death had to happen openly, in public, so there would be no question. Why? Because the FBI was moving him into the witness protection program.

Will had been receiving death threats, and the government thought Bishop was behind them. As Bishop's attorney, Will had a lot of information about the criminal side of his business. Information the government desperately wanted because putting Bishop out of business was a top priority to them. Yes, Bishop came to the firm towards the end of that segment saying he wanted to close out his enterprises to have a regular life for the sake of his son. That was a charade. He knew the government was getting close, and he needed to get out. He also needed to eliminate any evidence and witnesses that could literally "hang" him. Will was one of those people.

Yes, Will was not allowed to reveal what he knew because he acted as Bishop's attorney. But if the threats against his life continued, hanging on to his law license would not be a top priority. Having an opportunity to lead a normal life in the witness protection program, just starting over again and out of Bishop's reach was his top priority. And perhaps that new life could include Alecia if she too were willing to give up everything. After all, her two children were entering college and the damage done to her marriage never really healed. She could join Will if she truly wanted to, and what a wonderful gift that would be to the viewers who have loved this show for years....

Remember her whispered words in that beautiful love scene when she said to him, "This has been the happiest I have ever been" ... words to that effect.

The staged death scene was intended to convince Bishop he had no more worries about what danger Will could do to him. But just as a backup scenario, Will had given video depositions and therefore testimony against Bishop's enterprises. He also turned over other evidence. So the government had what it needed to put Bishop away, but the trade-off was it had to promise Will a safe, long life. Thus the staged death and subsequent witness protection program life.

This is another factor that prompted Kalinda to disappear. She too knew too much about Bishop's business.

The Bishop matter has now been handled, and I think a "stunning" end to this series -- they have announced it will be a "shocker" -- is that Alecia learns Will is in fact alive. One of the last scenes could possibly show just her walking towards him and the ensuing reunion. What happens afterwards, we do not know.

What could be read as a "clue" was recently dropped when Alecia suddenly asked Eli out of the blue what had been in the second recorded message Will left for her on her phone that Eli surreptitiously deleted. Part of the message Eli reported Will had said was that he was ready to give up everything, his current life, his law practice, everything for just the two of them to be together. It was odd this was thrown into that script at that time, but it did remind the viewers just how much Will loved Alecia and what all he was willing to give up to have a life with her.


This is pure speculation. But if the series ends in a fashion that has a "shocking" but wonderful, happy ending that would be an appropriate finale to an outstanding show that for seven years gave us an incredible source of entertainment.

Okay, elleng -- any possibilities, any thoughts?


February 5, 2016

The Democratic Presidential primary is reminiscent of the George H.W. Bush versus Bill Clinton race

Running for his second term in 1992, George H.W. Bush was riding high in the foreign affairs arena. The salient issue I remember propelling him to that high was his decision to ride his horse into Saddam Hussein's invasion of Kuwait. With a coalition behind him, ride he did and win he did. The Kuwaiti people to this day regard him as a hero.

That invasion was labeled "The Gulf War" at that time, and some say set the precedent for George W. Bush's* later invasion of Iraq, subsequently called "The Second Gulf War."

But in 1992, Bill Clinton was popular with a certain sect of the voting public, most of whom I remember being much younger than George H.W. Bush. Those who argued against his election said he could never win, always pointing to his lack of experience on an international level.

At one point in time, Bush aides perceived Clinton might in fact overtake Bush and deny him his second term. One Clinton biographer wrote that Clinton had been privately approached by Bush aids to let Bush in fact serve a second term. After that second Bush term, Republicans would lie down and virtually give Clinton a free ride to the Oval Office in 1996. Clinton declined. He felt his chances were pretty good because the economy was not serving well many people in this Country, and those people favored Clinton.

"It's the economy, Stupid."

Many people were stunned to see George H.W. Bush lose to Bill Clinton who in their perception had zero political gravitas. What those people failed to grasp that given the choice of voting for a President who fought to save a foreign country at the expense of allowing this Country to vastly deteriorate was a no-brainer. They chose to vote for the candidate they thought would pay more attention to the condition of this land than the land over in the Persian Gulf. Clinton was the one who would improve their everyday life, and thus he prevailed.

(Side note: Ironically, in 1993 it was President Bill Clinton who defended George H.W. Bush against Saddam Hussein's plot to assassinate him.)* http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/inatl/longterm/iraq/timeline/062793.htm

I see a lot of similarity in that race and the contest between Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders. And for the same reason Bill Clinton prevailed over George H.W. Bush, voters will ironically choose Bernie Sanders over Hillary Clinton. He is the one who will put food on their table and keep a roof over their heads.

Politics is after all personal. JMHO


*not supported by later Pentagon report....

February 3, 2016

Lawrence O'Donnell said this evening we might not know who actually won Iowa until June

I believe that might be true. Yesterday, it was said today we would start finding errors and mistakes in last night's Iowa total, narrow as it was, and there could be corrections. With Sanders calling for the raw data of the vote, it will be interesting to see what comes out in the wash. We have already observed glimmers.

I have become hardened to public comments insulting the left wing of the Democratic party. The only words that really stick with me are those that came from a Republican, no less:

It is confidence in the men and women who administer the judicial system that is the true backbone of the rule of law. Time will one day heal the wound to that confidence that will be inflicted by today's decision. One thing, however, is certain. Although we may never know with complete certainty the identity of the winner of this year's Presidential election, the identity of the loser is perfectly clear. It is the Nation's confidence in the judge as an impartial guardian of the rule of law."

former Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens' dissent opinion in Bush v. Gore, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Paul_Stevens

It is long past time the American people should have confidence in both its government and its elections. For that reason, among others, I am supporting Bernie Sanders for President because I truly believe he can drive this Country to a place where we should have been all along -- in a government which works for all of the people, not just the corporations and super wealthy.

Great thread, madfloridian. Just wanted to add a few additional thoughts for contemplation.


January 26, 2016

Bernie Sanders Fighting for Women's Rights Puts his Critics on the Ropes

Directly quoted from Senator Sanders website:

We are not going back to the days when women had to risk their lives to end an unwanted pregnancy. The decision about abortion must remain a decision for the woman and her doctor to make, not the government.

We are not going to allow the extreme right-wing to defund Planned Parenthood, we are going to expand it. Planned Parenthood provides vital healthcare services for millions of women, who rely on its clinics every year for affordable, quality health care services including cancer prevention, STI and HIV testing and general primary health care services. The current attempt to malign Planned Parenthood is part of a long-term smear campaign by people who want to deny women in this country the right to control their own bodies.

We are not going back to the days when women did not have full access to birth control. Incredibly, almost all of the Republicans in the Senate are in favor of giving any employer who provides health insurance, or any insurance company, the ability to deny coverage for contraception or any other kind of procedure if the employer had a “moral” objection to it. That is unacceptable.

We will not go back to the days when survivors of domestic violence had no access to services or recourse against their abusers, because domestic violence was swept under the rug, as a shameful, private issue. Worse yet, it was not so long ago that spousal abuse was legal in many states. We must expand services provided through the Violence Against Women Act and the Family Violence Prevention and Services Act, and fight any attempts to undermine these laws.

Check Bernie Sanders' website for more information on important issues for which Bernie Sanders is fighting for women.


January 26, 2016

Lies and deception during campaigning or ENDORSING candidates come and go but reputations endure

It is an enigma to me to understand why people and organizations who chronically smear a political candidate expect the American people to forgive and forget once the contest is resolved. One's reputation is the most valuable asset he or she possesses. That is especially true in Washington, D.C., the political capital of the world.

With the intensity of the primaries heating up to a level like a volcano threatening to erupt any moment, spewing a catastrophic amount of lava on creatures in its path, one wonders when the damage is finally assessed who will never again regain the status of respect he or she once held and who, through a refusal to participate in lies, dirty tricks and smears emerges unscathed.

That is an important point because one of these types will be taking the Oath of Office January 21, 2017, during which he or she will swear

"I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully execute the office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States."

—Presidential oath of office, Article II, Section 1, United States Constitution

It would be a truly wonderful experience to be able to think the new resident of the White House speaks the truth when taking that oath, but the question remains will that person have a reputation we can trust and believe in.

January 15, 2016

While watching Rachel Maddow interview Hillary Clinton, I heard one remark Rachel made

that will always stay with me. While discussing the subject of Hillary impugning Bernie Sander's character, Rachel suddenly exclaimed:

"He doesn't have a single enemy in Washington."

Hillary blinked. She knew immediately she had no answer for that statement. Here from where I sit inside the Beltway, I can tell you that is indeed a stunning statement for a commentator to make about a politician running for President. I have never seen or heard the likes of this in the decades I have been following politics. It is almost impossible to function in the political arena and attain one's goals without making enemies. Yet he has not one.

Honesty is a rare commodity in our political world. One cannot buy it, one cannot bargain for it, it must be inherent in one's psychological makeup. Bernie Sanders is an awe-inspiring example of what our government could be like if only we work hard enough to put people with his character in the Oval Office.


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