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Member since: Mon Sep 6, 2004, 08:54 PM
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Pete Buttigieg Isn't Just Winning Over People on the Internet

Pete Buttigieg Isn’t Just Winning Over People on the Internet
“We belong in this conversation,” says the South Bend mayor, insisting that he’s not a 2020 long shot anymore.
Edward-Isaac Dovere
6:00 AM ET


This can all seem like flavor-of-the-month political coverage. But his event on Friday night in Manchester got so many RSVPs that it had to move from a bar to an art museum down the road. And even then there were more people chanting outside than most of the candidates are getting.

The next morning, here at a bookstore on the main stretch of the state capital, Buttigieg had to have security clear a path as he made his way through a crowd with Representative Ann Kuster at his side, visibly surprised by the turnout.

Yes, many of the people at both events told me, they can actually see this 37-year-old who probably couldn’t win his local House seat being the president. Of the United States. Like, giving the State of the Union and Oval Office addresses. Picking a Cabinet, responding to foreign terrorist attacks, negotiating with foreign leaders, introducing a budget. Or as Lucas Harrington, a 22-year-old student who got the mayor to sign his autobiography, put it to me, “I would imagine President Pete, because his name is going to be just as hard to pronounce if he wins.”


By the time Buttigieg arrived at the bookstore, he’d spent close to an hour shaking hands and taking photos. At least 100 of the people who’d come hadn’t been able to see him around the obstacle of the bookshelves, but they’d stayed for the whole stump speech nonetheless. At one point on the street in Concord, what was supposed to be a quick photo to go with yet another profile became an almost paparazzi-level crush of cameras. He and his staff are just as surprised that his campaign has taken off like this, and that he got booked for Ellen before he finished hiring Iowa or New Hampshire directors. The plan was to build slowly, get articles written about him as an intriguing curiosity, hope for a breakout line in the first primary debate at the end of June, and then try to get a turn in the spotlight like this maybe at the end of the summer.

Instead, he’s spent the past few weeks already fielding questions about whether he is gay enough, whether he stands by the opioid-related consulting that McKinsey did while he worked in a completely different part of the business, and whether he should be made to answer for some of the things his late father, Joseph A. Buttigieg, an English professor at Notre Dame, wrote about Marxism.

“All of the little potshots are evidence that people are taking us seriously,” Buttigieg told me. “It’s a good sign.”


Posted by babylonsister | Thu Apr 11, 2019, 02:18 PM (3 replies)

Right Wingers Are Scared Of Pete Buttigieg

4/11/19 4:27am
Read time: 3 minutes
Right Wingers Are Scared Of Pete Buttigieg
The right-wing thought leaders can't quite dismiss Mayor Pete out of hand, and that's making them churlish and mean.
By Steve M.
Right Wingers Are Scared Of Pete Buttigieg Image from: Screen shot

The notion that Pete Buttigieg, the under-40 gay mayor of a midsize city in Indiana, could become president of the United States seems far-fetched, but apparently it's plausible enough that "Trump whisperer" Salena Zito is hedging her bets, or at least trying to use Buttigieg as a cudgel to beat other Democrats:

How Pete Buttigieg Could Hurt Trump in the Rust Belt

... Mayor Pete, as he likes to be called, strikes a tone that is kinder and less combative than the insult-driven politics of Trump and the Democratic Party's far-left members. His boyish good looks, intelligence and military background are undoubtedly appealing, as is his faith.

"Scripture tells us to look after the least among us, that it also counsels humility and teaches us about what's bigger than ourselves," said Buttigieg, a devout Episcopalian. "It points the way toward an inclusive and unselfish politics that I strive to practice, whether I'm talking about my faith on the stump or not."

Mayor Pete's politics are already gaining traction. Since launching his exploratory committee to run for president on Jan. 23, he has already raised $7 million for his campaign....

The fact that he was born and bred in the American Rust Belt is possibly his biggest asset....

You won't find Buttigieg ridiculing fellow Midwestern voters or taking them for granted, the way Hillary Clinton's campaign did in 2015. After the University of Notre Dame, based in South Bend, invited her to attend their prestigious St. Patrick's Day event, her campaign declined, telling organizers that "white Catholics were not the audience she needed to spend time reaching out to," as The New York Times wrote.

... Jeff Rea, a former Republican mayor from another Indiana town and current president of the South Bend chamber of commerce, said nobody should count out Mayor Pete. He and Buttigieg have been on opposite sides on a number of projects but have "always found a way to come together for a solution."

... No mayor in history has ever run and won his or her party's nomination for president, nor has anyone under the age of 43. Then again, no businessman had ever done it until Trump came along.

Zito sneers at Buttigieg for supporting abortion rights, renewable energy, and some tax increases to pay for social programs, but the self-appointed bard of the heartlanders isn't 100% sure that that's going to be a dealbreaker for Middle America, and it's causing her a bit of cognitive dissonance. I'm sure she'll experience more of a freakout if Kamala Harris, Cory Booker, Elizabeth Warren, or Bernie Sanders wins, but for now she's trying to tell us (and herself) that a Buttigieg victory after Trump's win in 2016 would be continuity, not change. (I don't think so.)

But the right-winger who's really freaking as he watches Buttigieg's apparent ascent is Erick Erickson, who's become fixated on the mayor's claims of religious faith. Erickson lost control on Twitter earlier this week:


Posted by babylonsister | Thu Apr 11, 2019, 08:57 AM (3 replies)

Trump laments that US troops can't get "rough" with migrants at the border

Trump laments that US troops can’t get “rough” with migrants at the border
And it seems like he’d ask them to do it, too — if it weren’t for those pesky laws.
By Alex Ward@AlexWardVoxalex.ward@vox.com Apr 10, 2019, 5:50pm EDT

President Donald Trump has mused about closing down the US-Mexico border entirely. He’s reportedly talked about restarting the family separation policy (which he denies). And now, Trump has added another line to his stop-immigration-at-all-costs rhetoric.

The president is saddened by the fact that the military can’t be more “rough” with migrants coming to America.

After telling reporters in Texas on Wednesday that he wants more troops at the US-Mexico border, the president added, “our military, don’t forget, can’t act like a military would act. Because if they got a little rough, everybody would go crazy.”

The reason? “They have all these horrible laws that the Democrats won’t change [and] they will not change them,” the president said, without explaining what laws he means, or how his political opponents thwarted him.

It’s easy to dismiss this as another off-the-cuff, tough-guy Trump comment. But one can’t lose sight that this is the commander in chief — the head of all American forces — saying he kind of wishes the military could have more freedom to hurt men, women, and children.

That, to put it mildly, is horrifying.


Posted by babylonsister | Thu Apr 11, 2019, 08:00 AM (14 replies)

Jay Inslee's CNN town hall showed he wants to lead on climate. Voters have other priorities too.

Jay Inslee’s CNN town hall showed he wants to lead on climate. Voters have other priorities too.
The Washington governor focused on global warming, but also fielded questions on health care, gun control, and Boeing.
By German Lopez@germanrlopezgerman.lopez@vox.com Apr 11, 2019, 12:10am EDT

Jay Inslee is running for president, he says, to do something about climate change, and his campaign has focused on the issue. His CNN town hall in Washington, DC, on Wednesday night showed that voters seem to like the focus — but also have other priorities they’d like addressed.

Inslee, the second-term governor of Washington, began the town hall by saying that global warming would be his top priority as president. “I will make this pledge right now: If I am elected to this high honor, I will make defeating climate change the number one priority of the United States,” Inslee said. “And I believe I can accomplish that.”

In a key moment, Inslee laid out his campaign’s intention: “There was only four minutes of climate change in the last three presidential debates. I’m going to end that.”


Posted by babylonsister | Thu Apr 11, 2019, 07:55 AM (8 replies)

Holden Matthews Arrested in String of Louisiana Church Fires

Holden Matthews Arrested in String of Louisiana Church Fires
Matthews took an interest in black metal and pagan social media pages, which had connections to neo-Nazism and white supremacy.
Julia Arciga, Kelly Weill, Adam Rawnsley
04.10.19 9:48 PM ET

A 21-year-old named Holden Matthews has been arrested in connection with fires that destroyed three Louisiana churches in the span of two weeks, local news outlet KATC reports.

Throughout the end of March and in early April, three churches in rural St. Landry Parish were burned down. Matthews is reportedly the son of a St. Landry Parish Deputy, and he was booked into St. Landry Parish jail at about 5:30 this evening. Holden’s family declined to comment to The Daily Beast.

On a Facebook page that appears to belong to Matthews, he was active in black metal and pagan pages. Although both scenes are predominately apolitical, both have large neo-Nazi fanbases. Matthews commented on two memes about Varg Vikernes, a far-right (and self-described former neo-Nazi) metal musician who served 15 years in prison for burning churches in Norway and killing a fellow metal musician.


Posted by babylonsister | Thu Apr 11, 2019, 06:47 AM (0 replies)

Reports: Canadian family drove home from Florida with dead father in backseat

Reports: Canadian family drove home from Florida with dead father in backseat
KCCI Updated: 3:59 AM CDT Apr 10, 2019
Kate Malongowski

A Canadian family’s trip to Florida ended tragically after an 87-year-old man died of an apparent heart attack during the drive home.

Fernand Drapeau’s wife and 60-year-old son had decided to continue driving with his body back to Canada to avoid costly fees from the U.S. health care system, the Vancouver Sun reported.

Drapeau’s body was discovered in the backseat by agents along the U.S.-Canada border March 31 after being stopped and searched before driving into the country.

Authorities believe Drapeau had been dead for at least two days before he was discovered, CTV News reported.

Canadians run the risk of costly healthcare bills if they happen to need medical care while visiting the states if they're without travelers insurance.


Posted by babylonsister | Wed Apr 10, 2019, 04:01 PM (14 replies)

Adam Schiff Rips William Barr For Falsely Claiming That The Trump Campaign Was Spied On


Posted on Wed, Apr 10th, 2019 by Jason Easley
Adam Schiff Rips William Barr For Falsely Claiming That The Trump Campaign Was Spied On

House Intelligence Committee Chairman Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA) ripped Attorney General William Barr for his false claim that the Trump campaign was spied on.

Barr was asked during his Senate testimony if he thought the Trump campaign was spied on. He answered, “Well, I think there was spying did occur, yes, I think spying did occur.” When he was asked if he had any evidence that spying occurred, Barr answered, ” I have no specific evidence that I would cite right now.”


Rep. Schiff responded to Barr in a statement provided to PoliticusUSA, “The top law enforcement officer of the country should not casually suggest that those under his purview engaged in ‘spying’ on a political campaign. This type of partisan talking point may please Donald Trump, who rails against a ‘deep state coup,’ but it also strikes another destructive blow to our democratic institutions. The hardworking men and women at the DOJ and FBI deserve better.”

Barr is Trump’s attorney, not America’s

Attorney General Barr floated a baseless allegation against the law enforcement officers that are under his jurisdiction because that is what Trump wants to hear. William Barr’s conduct with the Mueller report and now on the spying conspiracy theory is proof that Trump finally has someone at the DOJ who will protect him and follow his orders.

William Barr is not serving the United States of America. He is serving Donald Trump.
Posted by babylonsister | Wed Apr 10, 2019, 03:21 PM (21 replies)

The Trumpians: A Confederacy of Dunces, a Dunciad of Neo-Confederates


The Trumpians: A Confederacy of Dunces, a Dunciad of Neo-Confederates
Harold Meyerson
April 9, 2019
The president’s ability to find steadily less qualified and more dangerous appointees is impressive.

Midway into the third year of his presidency, Donald Trump is still able to find less competent clowns and more brutal thugs than their clownish, brutish predecessors to execute his policies (or, more accurately, his impulses). His nominations of Stephen Moore and Herman Cain to the Federal Reserve would place political hacks with proven records of economic idiocy in key policy-making slots. At one time or another, each advocated a reversion to the gold standard—the one policy guaranteed to turn a recession into a depression—and both warned repeatedly that the low interest rates and federal spending of the Obama era, which were key to the post-2008 economic recovery, would surely lead to ruinous inflation. Now that unemployment is at record lows, however, they have shifted their stance to supporting lowering interest rates to boost the economy—compliantly echoing the position of a desperate Trump hoping that good economic news will boost his re-election prospects.

Over at the Department of Homeland Security, Trump is cleaning house (or more precisely, making it even filthier) with the goal of rendering the very idea of coming to America so life-threatening that no one—even families compelled to flee for their lives from Central America—would consider it. According to reports in The New York Times and other publications, he’s considering restarting the program of taking children from their parents and signing an executive order to end birthright citizenship. Neither of these policies would likely survive a court test, but that would only encourage Trump to rail more loudly against the judiciary and dredge up even more authoritarian nominees to the federal bench.

By the way, if we’re going to eliminate birthright citizenship—de-naturalizing children for the crime of having immigrant parents—might I suggest that we strip citizenship from the descendants of the most serious crime ever committed against the United States: the treason of having fought for the Confederacy. Article III, Section 3 of the Constitution reads: “Treason against the United States shall consist only in levying war against them, or in adhering to their enemies, giving them aid and comfort.” Seems to me that the founders thought this a more serious offense than immigrating here. I would exclude, of course, the African American descendants of Confederates, who may well be descendants only because white Confederate males, or their offspring, had forcible, non-consensual sexual relations with black women.

And speaking of the Confederacy, the racist and xenophobic policies of the administration are increasingly coming to resemble those of antebellum (or just plain bellum) Dixie—in particular, taking children from their parents, or parents from their children, a commonplace before slavery was abolished, now poised to make a grim return. Cycling through ever-denser dunces and relentlessly more thuggish racists, the Trump administration grinds barbarically on.
Posted by babylonsister | Wed Apr 10, 2019, 11:26 AM (2 replies)

Trump on track to dismantle the Office of Personnel Management

Looney tunes!


Marisa Fernandez
1 hour ago
Trump on track to dismantle the Office of Personnel Management

President Trump is planning to use his executive powers to remove a federal agency, in line with his administration's goal of cutting what it sees as wasteful spending and inefficiencies, the Washington Post reports.

The big picture: By the fall, the Office of Personnel Management anticipates an executive order that will break up the agency and, at first, assign its responsibilities to 3 different departments. The administration reportedly does not intend to lay off any of its 5,565 employees, but will eventually shrink its workforce through retirements and unfilled vacancies.

The Defense Department would take over background checks for government job applicants.

The General Services Administration would manage human resources tasks like training, payroll and the inspector general's office.

The Office of Management and Budget would handle "high-level policies governing federal employees," per the Post.

Why it matters: Labor activists say moving federal employees closer to the White House would signal a "dangerous" politicization of the civil service. But the Post notes that both the Obama administration and Hillary Clinton's campaign in 2016 considered doing the same, especially after Chinese hackers stole more than 20 million personnel records in a massive cybersecurity breach in 2015.
Posted by babylonsister | Wed Apr 10, 2019, 10:15 AM (5 replies)

Breaking: Investigators in Trump hush-money probe interviewed Hicks, security chief: report

Investigators in Trump hush-money probe interviewed Hicks, security chief: report
By Michael Burke - 04/10/19 08:21 AM EDT

Federal prosecutors reportedly gathered more evidence than was previously known during their investigation into hush-money payments President Trump is accused of making ahead of the 2016 election.

The Wall Street Journal reported Wednesday that prosecutors in New York interviewed members of Trump's inner circle, including former White House communications director Hope Hicks and Trump's former security chief, Keith Schiller.

Trump is accused of making the payments to adult-film actress Stormy Daniels and former Playboy model Karen McDougal, who said they had affairs years ago with Trump.

Authorities also reportedly obtained a recording of a phone call between Trump's former personal attorney, Michael Cohen, and a lawyer who represented the two women. Cohen has pleaded guilty to campaign finance charges in connection to the payments.


Posted by babylonsister | Wed Apr 10, 2019, 07:44 AM (2 replies)
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