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Gender: Male
Hometown: America's Finest City
Current location: District 48
Member since: 2001
Number of posts: 14,730

Journal Archives

Trump is FREAKING OUT Over the Arizona Fraudit Results that Prove Biden Won

The sham audit that Arizona Republicans have been hyping for several weeks is coming to an ignominious end. The Cyber Ninjas have released the results of their phony "forensic review," and will now skulk back into the shadows from whence they came. Meanwhile, Joe Biden will ignore it all and just continue being President.

On the other hand, Donald Trump and his contemptible confederates are not ignoring it all. Instead, they are focusing on preposterous accounts of utter nonsense so they can keep pumping out their "Big Lie" BS to his dimwitted disciples. The highly disreputable Cyber Ninjas were ultimately unable to manufacture any voting irregularities. In fact, their end count actually showed a wider margin of victory for Biden, with more votes for him and fewer for Trump.

This state of affairs has sent Trump into a ferocious frenzy as he feebly tries to fit the facts into a constructed reality that he, in his narcissistic stupor, can comprehend. And, true to form, his main method for doing that is to flood the zone with wild, nonsensical outbursts that serve no purpose other than to satiate his mammoth ego and to inflame his followers.

To that end Trump had his spokes-shill, Liz Harrington (whose proxy Trump tweeting is violating Twitter's rules against circumventing a ban) post a statement asserting that the subpoenas of four of his closest associates (Mark Meadows, Dan Scavino, Steve Bannon, and Kash Patel) were merely a diversion from the the Cyber Ninja fraudit report.


Biden Thanks Arizona G.O.P. for Letting Him Relive Greatest Victory of His Life

WASHINGTON (The Borowitz Report)—In an extraordinary expression of gratitude to his political foes, President Biden thanked the Arizona G.O.P. for allowing him to relive the most glorious victory of his life.

Speaking from the White House, Biden said, “The election was almost a year ago, and the memory of that amazing achievement had really started to fade. Thanks to the Arizona Republicans, all those wonderful memories have begun flooding back.”

The President added that he was indebted to the Arizona G.O.P. for “giving me a lift when I needed it most.”

“Let me tell you, this job is a killer, Jack,” he said. “Some days can get very, very dark. But thanks to the Arizona Republicans there’s a smile on my face and a skip in my step again.”

Biden noted that Pennsylvania Republicans, following in the footsteps of their Arizona brethren, are about to let him relive his greatest win yet again. “All I can say is, thanks, man,” he said. “You guys are the best!”


Semiconductor shortage that has hobbled manufacturing worldwide is getting worse

Source: Washington Post

After nearly a year, automakers are still cutting back on production and losing sales in a supply crisis that is also hitting other business sectors.

The global semiconductor shortage that has paralyzed automakers for nearly a year shows signs of worsening, as new coronavirus infections halt chip assembly lines in Southeast Asia, forcing more car companies and electronics manufacturers to suspend production.

A wave of delta-variant cases in Malaysia, Vietnam and the Philippines is causing production delays at factories that cut and package semiconductors, creating new bottlenecks on top of those caused by soaring demand for chips.

Underscoring that the problem has defied easy solutions, the White House on Thursday held its second summit in five months with semiconductor manufacturers and buyers, in part to gain more clarity on the scope of the crisis, senior administration officials said.

Attendees included senior executives from Intel, General Motors, Ford, Apple, Microsoft, Samsung and two dozen other companies, as well as Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo and National Economic Council Director Brian Deese.

Read more: https://www.washingtonpost.com/us-policy/2021/09/23/chip-shortage-forecast-automakers/

Looks like it's gonna be a little bit longer wait to get that Playstation 5.

China Makes Preparations for Evergrande's Demise

Beijing, reluctant to bail out the country’s most heavily indebted property developer, is asking local officials across the country to prepare for a ‘possible storm’

SINGAPORE—Chinese authorities are asking local governments to prepare for the potential downfall of China Evergrande Group, EGRNF -11.25% according to officials familiar with the discussions, signaling a reluctance to bail out the debt-saddled property developer while bracing for any economic and social fallout from the company’s travails.

The officials characterized the actions being ordered as “getting ready for the possible storm,” saying that local-level government agencies and state-owned enterprises have been instructed to step in to handle the aftermath only at the last minute should Evergrande fail to manage its affairs in an orderly fashion.

They said that local governments have been tasked with preventing unrest and mitigating the ripple effect on home buyers and the broader economy, for example by limiting job losses—scenarios that have grown in likelihood as Evergrande’s situation has worsened.

Evergrande faces a series of bond payments in the coming weeks, including one closely watched deadline Thursday for an interest payment on an offshore bond.

Local governments have been ordered to assemble groups of accountants and legal experts to examine the finances around Evergrande’s operations in their respective regions, talk to local state-owned and private property developers to prepare to take over local real-estate projects and set up law-enforcement teams to monitor public anger and so-called “mass incidents,” a euphemism for protests, according to the people.


CIA station chief in Vienna recalled amid criticisms of management and handling of 'Havana Syndrome'

Source: Washington Post

The CIA has removed its top officer in Vienna following criticism of his management, including what some considered an insufficient response to a growing number of mysterious health incidents at the U.S. embassy there, said current and former U.S. officials.

The sidelining of the station chief in one of the largest and most prestigious CIA posts is expected to send a message that top leaders must take seriously any reports of “Havana Syndrome,” the phenomenon named after the Cuban capital where U.S. diplomats and intelligence officers first reported unusual and varied symptoms, from headaches to vision problems to dizziness to brain injuries, beginning in 2016.

In recent months, the Austrian capital has become a hotbed of what the CIA officially calls “anomalous health incidents.”

The ouster of the CIA station chief comes as the State Department’s top official overseeing Havana Syndrome cases leaves her position after only six months.

Read more: https://www.washingtonpost.com/national-security/cia-havana-syndrome-vienna/2021/09/23/cbc3bbbc-1c7f-11ec-914a-99d701398e5a_story.html

More evidence that talking to Republicans is useless

Republicans have proved at every turn that they are not merely incapable of governing but are determined to cause havoc and real harm to America — from the refusal to create a Jan. 6 commission, to their assault on voting rights, to their obstruction on raising the debt ceiling and confirming executive branch nominees.

More examples of their destructiveness arrived on Wednesday. The Post reports that two former treasury secretaries who served under Republican presidents, Henry Paulson and Steven Mnuchin, “held private discussions this month with Treasury Secretary Janet L. Yellen and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.).” The former secretaries and Yellen essentially pleaded with McConnell to vote to lift the debt ceiling rather than wreck the economy. It was no go. The Post quotes former Democratic treasury secretary Lawrence H. Summers as saying, “Reality is not a partisan thing. Raising the debt limit is acknowledging reality, not making a partisan choice.” Well, that is quaint.

Acknowledging reality is the most partisan thing to do these days — whether it’s who staged the attack on the Capitol, how to protect the country from the delta variant, who won the 2020 election or what happens when the United States does not pay its bills. Republicans routinely operate in a parallel universe, in which the fun-house mirror of right-wing media reshapes reality to fit its MAGA agenda. The least effective strategies with Republicans is to appeal to their sense of patriotism or shame them into doing the “right thing.” Republicans operate on a singular principle: Whatever helps them retain or accumulate power, they will do, no matter what the harm to America.

The notion that there are capable GOP interlocutors who can negotiate deals with Democrats crashed and burned when Republicans rejected a bipartisan deal on the Jan. 6 commission negotiated by Rep. John Katko (R-N.Y.). They see anyone willing to acknowledge the reality of the attack — such as Rep. Liz Cheney (R-Wyo.) — as a threat to the party.


Republicans are unfit to govern.

Our constitutional crisis is already here

“Is there no virtue among us? If there be not, we are in a wretched situation.”
James Madison

The United States is heading into its greatest political and constitutional crisis since the Civil War, with a reasonable chance over the next three to four years of incidents of mass violence, a breakdown of federal authority, and the division of the country into warring red and blue enclaves. The warning signs may be obscured by the distractions of politics, the pandemic, the economy and global crises, and by wishful thinking and denial. But about these things there should be no doubt:

First, Donald Trump will be the Republican candidate for president in 2024. The hope and expectation that he would fade in visibility and influence have been delusional. He enjoys mammoth leads in the polls; he is building a massive campaign war chest; and at this moment the Democratic ticket looks vulnerable. Barring health problems, he is running.

Second, Trump and his Republican allies are actively preparing to ensure his victory by whatever means necessary. Trump’s charges of fraud in the 2020 election are now primarily aimed at establishing the predicate to challenge future election results that do not go his way. Some Republican candidates have already begun preparing to declare fraud in 2022, just as Larry Elder tried meekly to do in the California recall contest.

Meanwhile, the amateurish “stop the steal” efforts of 2020 have given way to an organized nationwide campaign to ensure that Trump and his supporters will have the control over state and local election officials that they lacked in 2020. Those recalcitrant Republican state officials who effectively saved the country from calamity by refusing to falsely declare fraud or to “find” more votes for Trump are being systematically removed or hounded from office. Republican legislatures are giving themselves greater control over the election certification process. As of this spring, Republicans have proposed or passed measures in at least 16 states that would shift certain election authorities from the purview of the governor, secretary of state or other executive-branch officers to the legislature. An Arizona bill flatly states that the legislature may “revoke the secretary of state’s issuance or certification of a presidential elector’s certificate of election” by a simple majority vote. Some state legislatures seek to impose criminal penalties on local election officials alleged to have committed “technical infractions,” including obstructing the view of poll watchers.


Experts Confirm Functional Democracy Requires At Least One Party To Care About Voting Rights

WASHINGTON—Noting that an ounce of concern for the enfranchisement of citizens was crucial to the system of government, a consortium of political theorists confirmed Wednesday that a functional democracy generally requires at least one party to care about voting rights.

“If you start from the premise that a government’s power is derived from the consent of the governed, and that the conferring of such power is contingent upon our freedom to cast a ballot, then there must be—at minimum—one major party that gives a shit about letting people vote,” said Georgetown University political scientist Lawrence Rupar, who added that studies of democracies throughout history had found that 100% failed when none of the people in power “so much as lifted a fucking finger” to ensure all eligible voters could participate in elections.

“Now, in an ideal system, one in which democracy truly flourishes, you would need all of the parties to rally around the cause of voting rights. But if none of them do? Well, then it doesn’t work at all.”

Reached for further comment, the team of experts confirmed the United States was not a functional democracy.


This is what a broken system looks like

If you want to know what a broken political system looks like, consider these new developments:

- On Tuesday, the House of Representatives passed a continuing resolution (CR) to keep the government open and suspend the debt ceiling until December 2022. While putting aside any policy disagreements by simply maintaining the status quo, the CR would avoid the twin looming crises of a government shutdown and the United States defaulting on its existing debt, which is what will happen if Congress does not act.

- That CR must now pass the Senate, where not only will Republicans not vote for it, but they will filibuster it so that it dies.

- The Post reports that former Republican treasury secretaries Steven Mnuchin and Hank Paulson recently held private discussions with current Secretary Janet L. Yellen and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), essentially begging McConnell not to create catastrophe by blocking a debt limit increase. Unfortunately, their intervention “did not resolve the matter and the U.S. is now racing toward a massive fiscal cliff with no clear resolution at hand.”

- A Moody’s Analytics report found that a showdown over the debt ceiling would cost “up to 6 million jobs, wipe out as much as $15 trillion in household wealth, and send the unemployment rate surging to roughly 9 percent from around 5 percent,” as The Post puts it. The report’s authors called the potential consequences “cataclysmic,” saying it could be as bad as the Great Recession.

- When Morning Consult and Politico asked Americans whom they would blame if the United States defaulted on its debt, 33 percent said they’d blame Democrats, 42 percent said they’d blame both parties equally, and only 16 percent said they’d blame Republicans.

It’s as though there are two roommates who don’t get along and one says, “How about we buy a new couch?” and the other responds, “I don’t really like your taste in furniture. How about instead we set fire to the building and kill everyone inside?”

This is madness.


As the GOP renounces democratic governance, the rationale to keep the filibuster is evaporating

We already know Donald Trump tried to steal the election. We have a tape of his call to Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger pleading to “find” more votes. We have notes from then-acting Deputy Attorney General Richard Donoghue documenting Trump’s attempt to have the Justice Department declare the election “corrupt" and then “leave the rest to me” and congressional allies. And we have Trump’s own words over weeks, culminating in his call for protesters to march on the Capitol ahead of the Jan. 6 insurrection. Trump continues to insist he won and recently demanded Raffensperger “decertify” the election.

Even still, it is downright chilling to see the detailed memo from conservative lawyer and Federalist Society bigwig John Eastman, who spoke at the Jan. 6 “Stop the Steal” rally, laying out a step-by-step process for throwing the election into turmoil so Trump could be installed.

It is chilling because it underscores that so many lawyers are eager to upend the Constitution and betray our democracy with a half-baked scheme involving then-Vice President Mike Pence violating his oath. It is chilling because Pence might have tried it — if not for the advice of former vice president Dan Quayle. But mostly it is chilling because Republicans remain lodged in the MAGA cult. They refuse to confront the implications of a domestic terrorist attack on the Capitol and would eagerly support the former president’s candidacy once more.

No one can seriously pass this off as the impulsive actions of one unhinged egomaniac. This was a detailed, wide-ranging and multi-level plan to stage a coup — one that all but two House Republicans refuse to investigate. Moreover, Republicans’ willingness to overthrow democracy continues to this day, both in their state laws to suppress voting and subvert elections and in their violent rhetoric.

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