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Profile Information

Gender: Do not display
Hometown: PA
Home country: USA
Current location: DC
Member since: Mon Nov 10, 2003, 07:36 PM
Number of posts: 33,204

About Me

I was born in Brooklyn, Trump was born in Queens. The only thing that makes people think I'm an H-1b stealing jobs from Americans is that my Grandparents immigrated from India, while Drumpf's immigrated from Germany. It's race, not citizenship. Americans are more diverse than you think. Millions of US citizens don't look the way you might expect. This fact is very important and will help us win elections.

Journal Archives

Almost 16 million voters were removed from the rolls. We should be alarmed.


Nearly two dozen Democrats are seeking votes for president. Apparently, there’s no such thing as too many.

But some officials think there are too many voters.

The number of names purged from voting rolls in recent years has surged, blocking the ballot box for millions of Americans.

That and the Justice Department’s approach to enforcing what remains of the Voting Rights Act were examined at a recent congressional hearing on “Protecting the Right to Vote: Best and Worst Practices.”

To overcome the worst practices, Rep. Jamie B. Raskin (D-Md.), chairman of the House Oversight and Reform subcommittee on civil rights and civil liberties, advocates a constitutional amendment that explicitly guarantees the right to vote.

Among the worst practices are those that rob Americans of the franchise because of errors, overly aggressive attempts to clean voting lists and voting roll manipulation designed to influence elections and political power.

Consider this data from Myrna Pérez of New York University’s Brennan Center for Justice: “Between 2014 and 2016, states removed almost 16 million voters from the rolls. That’s almost 4 million more than between 2006 and 2008. And it should be obvious that that is a rate that outstrips the growth rate of total registered voters and the growth rate of total population.”

She acknowledged the responsibility of election administrators to keep voting rolls clear of the dead and geographically departed. But she said “what is especially concerning to the Brennan Center” is jurisdictions now excluded from “federal pre-clearance under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act had purge rates that were significantly higher” than other jurisdictions, leaving 2 million fewer citizens eligible to vote.

I'm sure it's just a coincidence that most of the purges are minorities in republican-controlled states that have been getting more competitive. They're so concerned about voter fraud.

Who is that guy? Andrew Yang's presidential campaign draws crowds, money and an expected spot

Who is that guy? Andrew Yang’s presidential campaign draws crowds, money and an expected spot on the Democratic debate stage.


STUART, Iowa — Andrew Yang knows that most Americans have absolutely no idea who he is. Even before he makes his expected debut on the presidential debate stage next month, he has a good guess what viewers will be thinking when the camera shifts to him.

“‘Who the hell is that guy?’ ” said Yang, 44, speaking between stops during a recent campaign swing through Iowa.

He’s not wrong. A Taiwanese American entrepreneur, lawyer and philanthropist from New York who launched his long-shot bid for the presidency more than a year ago, Yang is barely a blip in most national polls, where his support ranks between 1 and 3 percent.

But Yang has become something of a below-the-radar phenomenon in the crowded field of candidates vying for the Democratic presidential nomination. Some candidates far better known than him have been struggling to catch fire on social media and are playing to smaller audiences; Yang has been packing in some of the largest crowds in the race — an estimated 3,000 in San Francisco; 2,000 in Los Angeles; and 2,500 in Seattle, where he paused the rally to point out a pair of bald eagles soaring overhead.

“It’s a sign!” Yang declared, as supporters broke into a chant of “USA! USA! USA!”

Our party is diverse not just in demographics, but in policy proposals. It's beneficial for our party to liberally explore and debate new ideas that may seem too radical now but could become policy when our party gains enough power in the future. Still the only candidate proposing universal basic income as more folks are left out of an evolving economy that would require less human labor. Workers may find that automation is a bigger threat than immigrants. Good luck building a wall against the invading caravan of robots coming for your jobs.

Florida Woman Pulls Foot-Long Alligator Out of Her Pants During Traffic Stop


A routine traffic stop in Florida (if there is such a thing) took a turn for the truly bizarre this week after a woman, when asked by the cops if she had anything on her, whipped out a foot-long alligator she was concealing in her pants. Nothing to see here, just another Monday in blessed Florida!

Sheriff deputies in Punta Gorda, Florida pulled over a pickup truck early Monday morning after the driver ran a stop sign, but got much more than they bargained for once they got a closer look at what else was hitching a ride inside the vehicle. The female driver and male passenger explained they had been attempting to collect frogs and snakes from a nearby underpass (?!), so authorities asked to see what they'd collected, according to local NBC affiliate WBBH.

Initially, the woman confessed she had 41 turtles in her bag, but it wasn't until the deputies asked if she had anything else that she made the big reveal. She pulled out a footlong alligator from her yoga pants, and plopped it in the truck bed.

The Charlotte County Sheriff's Office posted a photo of the lil' guy on its Facebook page with a cheeky caption copping to the Florida-ness of the whole ordeal. Eventually, the state's Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission arrived and took over the investigation. The alligator and turtles are native to Florida, but are regulated so the man and woman were cited and all of the reptiles were ultimately seized and released.

Who knows, though, the little alligator may have gotten a taste for adventure and could be out there making beer runs by now.
Posted by IronLionZion | Thu May 9, 2019, 07:42 AM (4 replies)

Visa approvals for tech workers are on the decline. That won't just hurt Silicon Valley.

More tech work could head overseas as the US allows fewer tech workers into the country.


“It’s treated as a zero-sum game, but if these companies don’t get someone with an H-1B, it’s not likely the job will be filled with an American,” said Jeremy Robbins, New American Economy’s executive director.

What’s more likely is that companies will send the work to where there are eligible employees: overseas.

For all the political attention it’s getting, it’s notable that the H-1B program is actually very small. Its annual new and continuing approvals account for just 0.2 percent of the total US workforce of 160 million.

“H-1Bs are not an enormous slice of the workforce,” according to Richard Burke, president and CEO of Envoy Global, a company that helps startups and Fortune 500 companies alike navigate immigration. “But it has become a flashpoint because of one or two instances of abuse,” he said, referring to high-profile cases in which Disney and Southern California Edison replaced their entire IT departments with outsourced H-1B workers. These were cases in which American talent was obviously available, so they shouldn’t have warranted H-1B workers.

In a survey of 400 US hiring managers with experience sourcing foreigner employees, Envoy found that 22 percent said their companies were relocating work overseas due to the current US immigration system. Some 26 percent said they were delaying projects altogether.

“We have a well-known consumer packaged goods company that needed engineers to design containers for their products,” Burke said. “All of their other manufacturing and distribution was in the US, and they very much preferred to hire in the US, but they couldn’t find sufficient candidates.”

Outsourcing and consulting firms — which provide IT services for companies whose main business isn’t tech, and which tend to rely more heavily on H-1B visas as a share of their overall workforces — have received the brunt of the decline in approvals. The situation isn’t as bad for the biggest tech companies, like Google, Apple, and Amazon, which are seeing most of their applications approved. Still, both groups are advocating for more H-1Bs.

There are good graphs at the link that I can't post here. The services companies in red on the bar graph that are using the most % of H-1B labor will be having the most job openings. Tata, Wipro, Infosys, TechMahindra, etc. could care less about your skills and experience, they're just desperate to fill positions on client contracts and your US citizenship is a major incentive since they won't have to pay for your visa fees. DUers should apply to these companies today.

Get it DUers! DU it for America
Posted by IronLionZion | Tue May 7, 2019, 03:47 PM (0 replies)

Red counties are doing better under Trump -- but not as well as blue cities


(CNN)Large, mostly Democratic-leaning, metropolitan centers are consolidating their dominance of the national economy even as smaller, mostly Republican-leaning communities at their periphery show clear signs of economic revival under President Donald Trump, according to an extensive new analysis of regional economic dynamics published Tuesday.

These twin trends -- consolidation at the core, revival at the periphery -- underscores the breadth of the economy's gains during the prolonged expansion that began over a decade ago following the financial crash of 2008. But they also document the continued divergence between the economic power concentrating in large places mostly resistant to Trump and the political power centered on the primarily smaller places that underpin his support.

Since Trump took office, jobs -- and to a lesser extent economic output and population -- have all grown at a faster rate than earlier in the decade in the counties that he carried, most of them exurbs, smaller cities, small towns and rural areas.
But, in absolute numbers, most of the nation's new jobs and an even greater share of its new economic output are still flowing into the large urban centers that have moved sharply away from the GOP since Trump's emergence, according to the new calculations by the Brookings Institution's Metropolitan Policy Program.

The result is that halfway through Trump's presidency the geography of political and economic power continues to diverge. Though Hillary Clinton in 2016 won less than one-sixth of all counties (about 490), her counties accounted for about two-thirds of the nation's total gross domestic product and three-fifths of all its jobs in 2018, Brookings found.
The more than 2,600 counties that Trump carried, although growing faster than in the final years of Barack Obama's presidency, still generate a distinct minority of the nation's output and employment. And over half of Trump's counties have lost population since 2010, according to Brookings' calculations.

Rural America still left behind in the Trump economy. Maybe they should vote for the candidate who will help them get some infrastructure, education, and universal healthcare.
Posted by IronLionZion | Tue May 7, 2019, 10:41 AM (3 replies)

Let's give Trump cash reparations -- in exchange for his retirement


How can we ever repay Donald Trump?

The sad truth is we probably cannot. And yet, conscience dictates that we try.

This is why we should welcome Jerry Falwell Jr.’s proposal: America owes President Trump reparations.

The president of Liberty University floated this fine idea over the weekend, and Trump himself quickly embraced the proposal with a retweet, adding a rationale: “Despite the tremendous success that I have had as president, including perhaps the greatest ECONOMY and most successful first two years of any president in history, they have stolen two years of my (our) Presidency (Collusion Delusion) that we will never be able to get back.”

Theft! A tangible wrong. And yet — incredibly — when I search GoFundMe for “Trump Reparations,” I find nobody attempting to compensate Trump for his suffering.

Certainly, others have a more compelling historical claim on reparations. Democratic presidential candidate Elizabeth Warren floated reparations for Native Americans, who suffered genocide. Another Democratic candidate, Kamala Harris, has revived the idea of reparations for African Americans, for centuries of slavery.

But perhaps nobody, living or dead, has alleged more grievances than Trump. “No politician in history — and I say this with great surety — has been treated worse or more unfairly,” Trump has said, placing his suffering ahead of Benito Mussolini (executed corpse beaten and hung upside down) and Oliver Cromwell (body drawn and quartered, head hung on spike).

Consider the litany of wrongs done to him in the past few days alone, as chronicled in his Twitter output: He is being targeted “by the deep state” and he is suffering from congressional “bullying.” He is the victim of “a complete setup,” and he lamented with Vladimir Putin a “Russian hoax” perpetrated against them both. The “FBI sent undercover agents to spy on” his campaign. His enemies went after him with “18 Trump Hating Angry Democrats & 49 FBI Agents” — and now Democrats want a “redo”!

Additionally, his fellow conservatives are being “treated so horribly” by Facebook, and “it’s getting worse and worse.” His opponents are playing “very dirty . . . like never before.” Andrew Napolitano, once an ally, is now talking about Trump’s guilt on Fox News (“Take him off the air!”).

He's the real victim here. The poor guy has been through enough. It's time for his personal nightmare to end, let him retire.

Posted by IronLionZion | Tue May 7, 2019, 10:24 AM (9 replies)

FBI Agent Turned CNN Analyst Asha Rangappa Wants to Restore Your Faith in America


“Having seen how the sausage is made,” she says, “I feel less worried about it.”

On a quiet Tuesday evening in the suburbs of New Haven, Asha Rangappa is discussing propaganda with her children. “Have you ever come across white nationalists on YouTube?” she asks her adolescent son. He pauses, prodding at his pasta and twisting his mouth. “You took too long to answer,” she says, “so you have!”

This, it seems, is typical; when your mom was once an FBI agent, you expect some dinnertime behavioral analysis. As the meal winds down, her son tells me that polygraphs are largely inaccurate and therefore inadmissible in court, and that “butt clenching” is a sign of lying. Expressionless, his little sister lies: “My name is Laura.” “Yeah, but did your butt clench?” She tells him, firmly, no.

I’m at Asha Rangappa's dinner table because, for the past few years, her commentary on CNN and Twitter has helped hundreds of thousands of people understand the news. The Trump administration’s lies, scandals, and erratic behavior can make the average person’s head spin, but Rangappa—a former FBI counterintelligence agent and a lecturer at Yale’s Jackson Institute for Global Affairs—answers all of my most pressing questions: Is the travel ban illegal? If the President didn’t collude, then why does he act like a Russian asset? Can he pardon himself?

Rangappa’s humor and intellect have won her a formidable following. In Twitter comments, her fans ask legal questions, post political memes, and compare her to Alex Parrish, the former FBI agent protagonist of Quantico, played by Priyanka Chopra. On TV, Rangappa's presence is disarming. Surrounded by men in dark suits, she wears bold colors—flamingo pinks, splashes of teal—that offset her glossy hair and luminous bronze skin. She speaks with an animated gravity, opening her eyes wide and lingering on important phrases to make her points. “I don’t think she uses the pronoun ‘I,’” her former FBI mentor Jack Eckenrode tells me. “She’s pointing to the record, and to history and precedent, and she’s looking at what has come before and interpreting it for people in an objective manner.” She’d rather lay out the legal threshold for impeachment than weigh in on what she thinks Congress should do.

If you could invent a political commentator with bipartisan credibility, she might look like Asha Rangappa: the child of immigrants from a military family, a woman of color with experience in law enforcement, and a passionate advocate of national security whose politics trend left-of-center. There is “no other commentator I know of who is coming from the perspective of a counterintelligence agent,” says fellow CNN legal analyst Renato Mariotti. This gives Rangappa rare and critical insight into the Mueller investigation, which was, at its heart, a counterintelligence probe of Russia’s interference in the 2016 election (collusion is merely a piece of this). Rangappa knows from experience how the FBI handles Russian spies and disinformation; add to the mix her professorial skill at explaining complex ideas, and she is ideally positioned to break down the bewildering political events of recent years.

Very interesting read. People like Asha Rangappa are the reason some douchebags feel uncomfortable with diversity in security clearance and counterintelligence work. She makes some of those folks squirm like worms.



Posted by IronLionZion | Fri May 3, 2019, 06:56 PM (4 replies)

The alleged synagogue shooter was a churchgoer who talked Christian theology, raising tough question

The alleged synagogue shooter was a churchgoer who talked Christian theology, raising tough questions for evangelical pastors


Before he allegedly walked into a synagogue in Poway, Calif., and opened fire, John Earnest appears to have written a seven-page letter spelling out his core beliefs: that Jewish people, guilty in his view of faults ranging from killing Jesus to controlling the media, deserved to die. That his intention to kill Jews would glorify God.

Days later, the Rev. Mika Edmondson read those words and was stunned. “It certainly calls for a good amount of soul-searching,” said Edmondson, a pastor in the Orthodox Presbyterian Church, a small evangelical denomination founded to counter liberalism in mainline Presbyterianism. Earnest, 19, was a member of an OPC congregation. His father was an elder. He attended regularly. And in the manifesto, the writer spewed not only invective against Jews and racial minorities but also cogent Christian theology he heard in the pews.

So the pastor read those seven pages, trying to understand. “We can’t pretend as though we didn’t have some responsibility for him — he was radicalized into white nationalism from within the very midst of our church,” Edmondson said.

Earnest’s actions on Saturday in Poway — where he allegedly killed one Jewish worshiper and injured a rabbi, a child and another synagogue-goer — have spurred debate among evangelical pastors about the role of a certain stream of Christian theology in shaping the young man’s worldview, which allegedly turned deadly on the last day of the Passover holiday.

Christian extremists might find they have things in common with Islamic and other extremists.
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