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babylonsister

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Gender: Female
Hometown: NY
Home country: US
Current location: Florida
Member since: Mon Sep 6, 2004, 08:54 PM
Number of posts: 170,119

Journal Archives

The Right's War on Education Is Reaching Dystopian Levels

https://www.vanityfair.com/news/2021/07/the-rights-war-on-education-is-reaching-dystopian-levels

Critical Race Theory
The Right’s War on Education Is Reaching Dystopian Levels
AFT president Randi Weingarten is vowing to protect members targeted for “teaching honest history” amid GOP efforts to restrict how race and racism is taught and as Fox host Tucker Carlson calls for cameras in the classroom.
By Charlotte Klein
July 7, 2021


The head of the country’s second largest teachers’ union ripped conservatives on Tuesday, calling the right’s ongoing panic about critical race theory a flagrant attempt “to stop us from teaching students accurate history” and pledging to take legal action to protect teachers impacted by such efforts. “Culture warriors are labeling any discussion of race, racism or discrimination as [critical race theory] to try to make it toxic,” American Federation of Teachers president Randi Weingarten said in a virtual speech to union members, according to the Washington Post.

Republican advocates and lawmakers have weaponized critical race theory—the academic movement positioning race and racism as embedded in U.S. institutions—in their crusade to shape the discussion of national history in classrooms. As Weingarten noted, critical race theory is not taught in American elementary, middle, or high schools—the actual concept, as opposed to whatever it is conservatives have confused it with, is only taught in law school and college. But Republican-led legislatures have in recent months passed bans on critical race theory or related issues in at least five states, according to the Post, and dozens more are mounting similar legislative efforts. The AFT “has a legal-defense fund ready to go” and is prepared to protect any member who “gets in trouble for teaching honest history,” Weingarten said Tuesday, adding that the organization is “preparing for litigation [to counter these laws] as we speak.”

By tapping into GOP voters’ fear that children are being indoctrinated by left-wing fanatics—particularly amid increased racial equity work in schools—right-wing media figures have found a new bogeyman. Arguably no “culture warrior” has done so more than Tucker Carlson, the Fox News opinion host who on Tuesday continued to fan the flames around something that their children are likely not even being taught. “We can’t know exactly how widespread” the teaching of this “civilization-ending poison” is “until we finally get cameras in the classroom” to “oversee the people teaching your children, forming their minds,” Carlson told viewers. For months, the right-wing cable personality has amplified the ridiculous claim that anti-racism teaching is grounded in the demonization of white people, and continued to do so on Tuesday: “The overwhelming majority of Americans … think this is insane. They think you should judge people by what they do, not on the basis of their skin color.”

The approach comes at a cost, Weingarten notes. “We want our kids to have an education that imparts honesty about who we are,” she said, and the new laws limiting how educators discuss racism “knock a big hole” in that understanding. “We want to raise young people who can understand facts, study the truth, examine diverse perspectives and draw their own conclusions,” she said. Weingarten’s opposition is bolstered by the National Education Association—the other national teachers’ union, and the country’s largest—whose delegates recently approved a $56,500 measure to “research the organizations attacking educators doing anti-racist work.” That was one of several measures passed at last week’s virtual representative assembly; another was a $127,600 effort that involves the NEA putting out information about “what [critical race theory] is and what it is not” and attesting that it is “reasonable and appropriate for curriculum to be informed” by the school of thought.
Posted by babylonsister | Wed Jul 7, 2021, 02:12 PM (0 replies)

Former Employee: Trump Lived To Evade Taxes

https://crooksandliars.com/2021/07/trump-s-way-life-flouting-tax-laws-former


7/07/21 4:48am
Former Employee: Trump Lived To Evade Taxes
Barbara Res, a former Trump Organization executive, wrote a column that should leave no doubt in anyone's mind that Trump is guilty of tax evasion and is “in the worst trouble of his life.”
By NewsHound Ellen


Barbara Res, a former Trump Organization executive, wrote a column that should leave no doubt in anyone's mind that Trump is guilty of tax evasion and is “in the worst trouble of his life.”

As Raw Story pointed out, it’s been decades since Res worked for Trump but her allegations ring true and they line up with those of the charges against the Trump Organization and its CFO, Allen Weisselberg.

In a lengthy column for the New York Daily News, Res painted Trump's disrespect for tax laws as part of his brand: “The notion of breaking the tax laws was never considered, even 40 years ago when Trump was not quite the Trump we know today,” she wrote. “Flaunting and ultimately disobeying the tax laws was a way of life.”

“If I know the way Trump thinks, and I do, Trump never gave a serious thought about what was legal, only to whether it could be gotten away with," Res also said. “The man’s M.O. was bending and breaking the rules for maximum profit and advantage.”


She provided some examples:

The workers who did the demolition prior to the erection of Trump Tower were not paid fair wages and most of them were illegal immigrants. When this came up in court, Trump denied having any knowledge of it. In fact, he had a man on the job watching everything that happened and reporting it back to Trump, every day. Trump knew exactly what was going on. After demolition, when I came on, we worked with only legitimate union contractors.

Trump also cheated his partners. He had expensive, special work done on his apartment on Trump Tower, some of which was paid for by the project’s accounts, rather than by him personally.

I was working on projects that had partners and ones that did not. Sometimes, he charged my time against the projects with the partners. So they paid for the work I did directly for Trump.


Res believes Trump not only knew about any tax fraud Weisselberg committed but likely Trump directed it. “In my experience, as with all facets of his business, major decisions like paying someone’s rent or tuition were made by Trump and Trump alone. And with his other tax avoidance schemes, Trump had his minions to carry them out — but he was always in charge,” she wrote.

Will Weisselberg flip on Trump? Res predicts that he will, eventually. She describes him as “not a hardened player,” like Paul Manafort or Roger Stone, but “basically, an ordinary person” who has “apparently been corrupted by money and power.” Even if Trump is never charged, “his company can be destroyed,” Res said.

None of what Res knows will likely play any formal role in Trump’s current legal woes. But it does raise the question, why didn’t New York prosecutors go after the crimes that seem to have been right under their noses long ago? Just think what they might have saved the country from if they had.
Posted by babylonsister | Wed Jul 7, 2021, 08:05 AM (40 replies)

Trump's Claims of Tax Genius May Undermine Legal Defense of Ignorance

So his big mouth might be his downfall? womp womp


Trump’s Claims of Tax Genius May Undermine Legal Defense of Ignorance
SELF-OWN
The former president has for years claimed to be a master of the tax code. But now he’s going with a legal defense of ignorance. Experts say his past comments may be his undoing.
Jose Pagliery, Political Investigations Reporter
Asawin Suebsaeng, Senior Political Reporter
Published Jul. 07, 2021 5:06AM ET


Faced with an indictment of his family’s business empire for criminal tax fraud, former President Donald Trump previewed a defense strategy—of sorts—over the weekend: ignorance of the law.

“I don’t even know. Does anybody know the answer to that stuff?” he shrugged on Saturday, in front of adoring fans at a political rally in Sarasota, Florida.


The twice-impeached former president’s remarks provoked a flurry of reactions from some legal commentators and pundits, who saw a besieged client running his mouth in public, and potentially undermining his legal team’s carefully manicured strategies.

snip//

Former prosecutors and defense lawyers who have tried criminal tax cases in New York City told The Daily Beast that Trump, his family, and company executives face a steep hill—and it’s mostly due to Trump himself.

“To a certain extent, not knowing the law is a defense… It's one of the only defenses in a case like this,” said Tess Cohen, a former New York prosecutor. “But I have trouble believing that’ll get very far.”


That’s because, for years, Trump has called himself “king of the tax code.”

“Nobody knows the tax code better than I do… I'm like a student of the tax code,” he said during a 60 Minutes interview in 2015. He repeated that sentiment on MSNBC and later told supporters in Tampa: “I know more about taxes than any human being that God ever created.”


more...

https://www.thedailybeast.com/donald-trumps-claims-of-tax-genius-may-undermine-legal-defense-of-ignorance?ref=home
Posted by babylonsister | Wed Jul 7, 2021, 06:51 AM (3 replies)

GOP Lawmaker Says He Wants 18 Months of 'Chaos'



https://politicalwire.com/2021/07/06/gop-lawmaker-says-he-wants-18-months-of-chaos/

GOP Lawmaker Says He Wants 18 Months of ‘Chaos’
July 6, 2021 at 4:47 pm EDT By Taegan Goddard


Rep. Chip Roy (R-TX) was caught on a hidden video dismissing any chance of bipartisanship:

“Our job is to do everything we can to slow all of that down to get to December of 2022 and then get in here and lead… 18 more months of chaos and the inability to get stuff done. That’s what we want.
Posted by babylonsister | Wed Jul 7, 2021, 06:39 AM (9 replies)

Republicans have their message for 2022: Be afraid

https://www.dailykos.com/stories/2021/7/6/2038565/-Republicans-have-their-message-for-2022-Be-afraid

Republicans have their message for 2022: Be afraid
Laura Clawson
Daily Kos Staff
Tuesday July 06, 2021 · 9:26 AM EDT


Republicans are planning to use crime—translation: racist dog whistles—as a major part of their message for the 2022 midterm elections, NBC News reports. “Democrats want to defund the police” is going to be a Republican rallying cry in far more races than there are Democratic politicians who actually want to defund the police. (And the goal of “defund the police” is of course going to be radically misrepresented.) Black Lives Matter is also going to be targeted as a source of violence, all facts to the contrary, because … well, you know.

“In some districts, we focused on 'defund the police' and the broader culture fight,” a Republican operative told NBC News of the 2020 effort to win the House. “The broader culture” fight equals overt racism, in case you were wondering. He continued, “But in many suburban districts, we took 'defund the police' and turned it into a public safety issue about whether there should be increased or decreased police in your neighborhood, and what public safety officials do to keep people safe.” In other words, in districts where overt racism would turn voters off, Republicans used more veiled racism.

Democrats, meanwhile, are reminding voters that every single Republican in Congress voted against the American Rescue Plan, which sent money to local governments—including, in many areas, to their police departments.

Polling shows that voters think crime is a major, major issue—59% say it’s an “extremely” or “very” serious problem, with 55% believing that more funding for police is the answer to violent crime. It’s fertile ground for appeals to fear, even if reality doesn’t entirely bear that out.

The murder rate rose in 2020, going over six per 100,000 for the first time since 1998, though it remained far below the murder rates of the 1970s, 1980s, and early 1990s. Property crimes were mostly down in 2020, with the exception of motor vehicle thefts. All of this was happening in the context of the coronavirus pandemic, meaning it’s at least as likely to be a temporary blip as the beginning of a major trend.

“These rising rates of homicide are cause for alarm but not panic. It’s very important to understand we currently have violent crime rates that are a little above half what they were at their peak,” Thomas Abt of the Council on Criminal Justice told The Hill. “We are a long way from those dark days.”

As Republicans gear up to run on a crime-crime-crime-we-are-the-party-that-can-prevent-crime (psst, crime means Black people) platform, there were more than 400 shootings in the United States over the Fourth of July weekend, with at least 150 people killed. Republicans continue to fiercely oppose even the most minor tweaks to gun laws as part of reducing the crime they claim to think is such an enormous problem. Republicans want you to be afraid of a stereotypical racist dog whistle of a criminal, but they want to keep hands in the guns of men who stalk and abuse women they’re dating. The fear they want you to feel doesn’t extend to action on school shootings. Until recently, Republicans even blocked funding for research into gun violence to promote a better understanding of, and better solutions to, the problem. The Republican plan is all about supporting the same old police tactics and blaming the groups of people Republicans blame for everything, rather than considering what would actually work. They hope to ride that to victory in 2022.
Posted by babylonsister | Tue Jul 6, 2021, 09:51 AM (9 replies)

Eric Boehlert: Are Democratic women bad bosses? The press keeps pushing sexist double standard


https://pressrun.media/p/are-democratic-women-bad-bosses-the

Are Democratic women bad bosses? The press keeps pushing sexist double standard
So much "dysfunction"
Eric Boehlert
1 hr ago


Five years after the press helped hand Trump the White House by holding the first woman nominee to an entirely different standard, we see constant reminders that women, and particularly Democratic ones, get singled out for scrutiny.

Vice President Kamala Harris oversees an unhappy office of staffers! Interns at Sen. Kyrsten Sinema’s office are discontented! Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) sometimes verbally undressed staffers who don’t meet her work standards!

The press loves to feature women when compiling lists of Beltway Bad Bosses. Yet hard-charging men in politics earn points for behaving exactly how the women do when they get singled out for running “dysfunctional” operations.

snip//

If former staffers want to go on the record and complain that a presidential candidate was a bad boss, that’s a legitimate news story. But think of how many hundreds of men have run for president in the modern American era, and how the press has virtually never cared if their staffers were happy, or if their offices ran on affirming vibes.

Over the years, did you ever read long Times articles headlined, “How Ted Cruz Treats His Staff,” “How Bernie Sanders Treats His Staff,” “How Marco Rubio Treats His Staff,” “How John Edwards Treats His Staff”?

Me neither. That seems only to be a news story if the boss is a woman, and a Democratic woman.

Just ask Sen. Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ), who was the subject of a recent 2,000-word Business Insider piece about what a bad boss she is. Specifically, the article hyped the claim that a former Sinema intern was sometimes reprimanded when she went off script while fielding calls from constituents. That was the lead anecdote the outlet used to highlight turmoil within the office of a Democratic woman.

Maybe it’s time for the media to turn the workplace spotlight on male Beltway bosses.
Posted by babylonsister | Tue Jul 6, 2021, 08:27 AM (3 replies)

Eric Boehlert: Are Democratic women bad bosses? The press keeps pushing sexist double standard

https://pressrun.media/p/are-democratic-women-bad-bosses-the

Are Democratic women bad bosses? The press keeps pushing sexist double standard
So much "dysfunction"
Eric Boehlert
1 hr ago


Five years after the press helped hand Trump the White House by holding the first woman nominee to an entirely different standard, we see constant reminders that women, and particularly Democratic ones, get singled out for scrutiny.

Vice President Kamala Harris oversees an unhappy office of staffers! Interns at Sen. Kyrsten Sinema’s office are discontented! Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) sometimes verbally undressed staffers who don’t meet her work standards!

The press loves to feature women when compiling lists of Beltway Bad Bosses. Yet hard-charging men in politics earn points for behaving exactly how the women do when they get singled out for running “dysfunctional” operations.

snip//

If former staffers want to go on the record and complain that a presidential candidate was a bad boss, that’s a legitimate news story. But think of how many hundreds of men have run for president in the modern American era, and how the press has virtually never cared if their staffers were happy, or if their offices ran on affirming vibes.

Over the years, did you ever read long Times articles headlined, “How Ted Cruz Treats His Staff,” “How Bernie Sanders Treats His Staff,” “How Marco Rubio Treats His Staff,” “How John Edwards Treats His Staff”?

Me neither. That seems only to be a news story if the boss is a woman, and a Democratic woman.

Just ask Sen. Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ), who was the subject of a recent 2,000-word Business Insider piece about what a bad boss she is. Specifically, the article hyped the claim that a former Sinema intern was sometimes reprimanded when she went off script while fielding calls from constituents. That was the lead anecdote the outlet used to highlight turmoil within the office of a Democratic woman.

Maybe it’s time for the media to turn the workplace spotlight on male Beltway bosses.
Posted by babylonsister | Tue Jul 6, 2021, 07:30 AM (2 replies)

Ivanka Just Might Flip on Her Dad, Mary Trump Says

https://www.thedailybeast.com/ivanka-trump-just-might-flip-on-her-dad-mary-trump-says?ref=home


Ivanka Just Might Flip on Her Dad, Mary Trump Says
THE NEW ABNORMAL
“She’s much less likely to stay loyal than Allen Weisselberg.”
The Daily Beast
Published Jul. 06, 2021 5:12AM ET


The Trump Organization is now feeling the heat, with its CFO under indictment for grand larceny. Prosecutors are clearing to get that money man, Allen Weisselberg, to flip on his boss. But one interested observer says there may be another member of the Trump crew who’s even more likely to turn on the Don: his daughter Ivanka.

Both Ivanka and Weisselberg benefited from a similar perk, if that indictment by Manhattan prosecutors and reporting from The New York Times are to be believed. Both were officers of the Trump Organization and simultaneously were consultants for the company, too. It’s an arrangement that appears designed to shield all parties involved from paying taxes—and could open Ivanka up to tax fraud charges, just like her dad’s CFO.

“She’s much less likely to stay loyal than Allen Weisselberg,” says Mary Trump, the member of the family who has famously turned on the clan.


snip//

“But Allen had a pretty cushy gig where he was. And I think kind of in the grand scheme of things, as counterintuitive as this might sound, I think Ivanka has, one, more to lose and, two, more to hang onto. Her husband’s family is legitimately very wealthy,” Mary Trump answers.

She sees a number of similarities in the emerging case against Weisselberg and her legal dispute with her uncle, the former president. “The kind of fraud that’s being alleged here is exactly the kind of thing my aunts and uncles did to me,” she says. “Patterns strongly imply intent, right?”

more...

https://www.thedailybeast.com/ivanka-trump-just-might-flip-on-her-dad-mary-trump-says?ref=home
Posted by babylonsister | Tue Jul 6, 2021, 06:56 AM (30 replies)

Elie Honig Rips Barr: 'I'm Not Going To Be Polite, He's A Liar'


7/05/21 9:30am
Elie Honig Rips Barr: 'I'm Not Going To Be Polite, He's A Liar'
"The man lied to us not just once, not just twice but over and over throughout his tenure including starting with the Mueller report, but many things beyond that," he said.
By Susie Madrak


John Avlon welcomed Elie Honig, CNN legal analyst, to talk about his new book "Hatchet Man: How Bill Barr Corrupted The Justice Department."

"This is a really well-written book, not surprisingly. You do not need to be a lawyer to appreciate the moral story it tells and how it contrasts with your life as a prosecutor, given the surprising absence of prosecution experience of Bill Barr's Justice Department. I want to ask, you don't pull any punches. You come right out towards the top and say Bill Barr is a liar. Strong words. Why?" Avlon asked.

Honig said both fields of law and media are reluctant to call somebody a liar.

"However, I decided look, I'm not pulling punches here. The man lied to us not just once, not just twice but over and over throughout his tenure, including starting with the Mueller report but many things beyond that, the firing of the Southern District U.S. attorney," he said.

"Remember that when he said, oh, he's stepping down. A few hours later, the U.S. attorney said no, I'm not. He lied to us about the threat of election fraud, things large and small throughout his tenure. I'm not willing to let that sit. I'm going to call it out. I'm not alone. Federal judges, multiple federal judges called him out for obfuscating, not being credible. They said his statements do not align with the facts, all the polite ways of saying liar. I'm not going to be polite, he's a liar."

more...

https://crooksandliars.com/2021/07/elie-honig-rips-bill-barr-im-not-going-be
Posted by babylonsister | Mon Jul 5, 2021, 06:39 PM (17 replies)

7 Republican Senators Ask Biden To End Trump's Failed Trade War

Better late than never.

https://www.politicususa.com/2021/07/03/biden-trump-trade-war.html


Posted on Sat, Jul 3rd, 2021 by Jason Easley
7 Republican Senators Ask Biden To End Trump’s Failed Trade War


A group of seven Republican Senators wrote to President Biden and asked him to end Trump’s trade war that is hurting their states.

Bloomberg reported:

Seven Republican senators sent a letter to the White House asking Biden to repeal tariffs and other trade barriers that Trump implemented during his time in office affecting a wide range of industries, including agriculture, carmakers, and manufacturers.

“An important first step would be to reduce barriers to trade with our allies,” the letter said. “By doing so, we can stop damaging actions and retaliation and mend relationships while listening to businesses across the country that have suffered from the negative economic consequences.”

The letter, dated Wednesday, was signed by Joni Ernst and Chuck Grassley of Iowa, Ron Johnson of Wisconsin, Pat Toomey of Pennsylvania, Thom Tillis of North Carolina, Mike Lee of Utah, and Deb Fischer of Nebraska.


Trump’s Trade War Devastated Farmers And Manufacturing

Trump spent American taxpayer money attempting to bribe farmers before the 2020 election because his trade war had driven many of them close to bankruptcy and going out of business.

Trump claimed that China paid for the money to farmers, but the truth is that it was American taxpayer dollars.

The Biden administration has been busy with the pandemic and attempting to revive the economy, but one should expect a new trade policy that will remove the tariffs that have been so damaging to American exports.

The trade war ended up wiping out the Trump tax cuts and resulted in a tax increase of $3,000 for every American.

The trade war was so bad for the US economy that even Republicans are asking Joe Biden to end it.
Posted by babylonsister | Mon Jul 5, 2021, 10:26 AM (7 replies)
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