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Hometown: NY
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Current location: Florida
Member since: Mon Sep 6, 2004, 09:54 PM
Number of posts: 167,283

Journal Archives

Gov. Andrew Cuomo Blames Trump For Hanukkah Stabbing

I'm glad he drew that connecting line.


Gov. Andrew Cuomo Blames Trump For Hanukkah Stabbing
Posted on Sun, Dec 29th, 2019 by Jason Easley

Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D-NY) said that Trump is fomenting political hate that spreading to the culture after the Hanukkah stabbing.

Gov. Cuomo said on MSNBC:

What can anyone make of President Trump’s tweets? They say more about the sender than anything else. New York, he believes, is a Democratic state, and this is how he plays to his partisan base, by demonizing Democrats. Democrats are evil, Democrats are bad, Democrats have lost their mind, they’re anti-American. You foment the hate and then you’re shocked when you see these episodes of hate all across the country?

That has now become the dialogue and the currency of this nation and it’s in politics, but then it resonates out of the politics into society. And now you see people who are acting out on those hateful acts and people are impressionable, and some people are lost and some people are vessels and some people are ill, and they hear it and they respond


The Governor drew a clear line between Trump’s use of hate as a political weapon and the violent attacks that are being carried out against people who Trump and his supporters view as their enemies. Trump spends his days spewing at American citizens and their cities, and then he pretends to be presidential when the inevitable violence that his words gave the green light to injures or kills innocent people.

Cuomo did what many political media leaders refuse to do. He connected Trump’s leadership to the violence. Until Trump is forced to pay a political cost for his hate speech, he will continue to endanger innocent people.

Trump must be held accountable for the culture of violence and hate that he is enabling and encouraging.
Posted by babylonsister | Sun Dec 29, 2019, 06:03 PM (6 replies)

Jews Are Going Underground


Jews Are Going Underground
A month of terrible anti-Semitic attacks culminated with a stabbing yesterday of multiple people at a Hanukkah celebration at a rabbi’s home in Monsey, New York.
10:51 AM ET
Deborah Lipstadt
Professor of Holocaust history at Emory University

In a month of terrible anti-Semitic attacks, including a stabbing yesterday of multiple people at a Hanukkah celebration at a rabbi’s home in Monsey, New York, the news that most depressed me did not involve violence. It was not something done to Jews but something Jews did. A synagogue in the Netherlands is no longer publicly posting the times of prayer services. If you want to join a service, you have to know someone who is a member of the community.

Do not misunderstand me. I was and am in a fury over the multiple assaults, culminating in the Monsey attack, which was the worst since the murders in Jersey City, which, some readers might not realize, was less than three weeks ago.

In Europe and the United States, Jews have been repeatedly assaulted on the street. Tombstones were desecrated in Slovakia. In London, anti-Semitic graffiti was painted on synagogues and Jewish-owned stores. A Belgian daily newspaper accused a lawmaker who is Jewish of being a spy for Israel. A Polish town refused to install small brass plates that commemorate Holocaust victims. In Italy, the town of Schio did the same because, the mayor said, they would be “divisive.” (Divisive to whom?) This intolerance is coming from right-wing extremists, progressive leftists, and other minorities who, themselves, are often the object of persecution. Anti-Semites seem to think it is open season on Jews. And maybe, given the many incidents, they are right.

So why has the news that a synagogue in the Netherlands stopped posting the time of services upset me above all? Because it is vivid proof that anti-Semitism is driving Jews underground in the West.


When Jews feel it is safer for them to go “underground” as Jews, something is terribly wrong—wrong for them and, even more so, wrong for the society in which they live. Jews have taken and are taking anti-Semitism very seriously. Non-Jews must do the same.

You must do so, not solely for the sake of the well-being of your Jewish neighbors, friends, and fellow citizens. (Though that would be laudable.) You must do so for the sake of the well-being of the societies in which you live. No healthy democracy can afford to tolerate anti-Semitism in its midst. It is one of the long-term signs of rot in that democracy. If you care about democracy, you should care about the Jews among you, and the anti-Semites too.
Posted by babylonsister | Sun Dec 29, 2019, 05:12 PM (16 replies)

Former GOP Rep Tells Democrats To 'Go Big' And Make McConnell Pay For Sham Trial Plot


Posted on Sat, Dec 28th, 2019 by Sean Colarossi
Former GOP Rep Tells Democrats To ‘Go Big’ And Make McConnell Pay For Sham Trial Plot

Former Republican congressman David Jolly said on Saturday that Democrats should “go big” on highlighting Mitch McConnell’s misconduct in the wake of his comments that he will not be an impartial juror in the upcoming Senate impeachment trial.

According to Jolly, McConnell’s admission was a “fatal error” and should be “part of the reason why the articles” are not being sent to the Senate.

“I think his confession that he would not be impartial in this trial is akin to when Kevin McCarthy admitted that the Benghazi hearings were only to sink Hillary Clinton,” the former GOP lawmaker said. “It is a fatal error by Mitch McConnell that needs to be part of history and part of the reason why the articles are not going over.”


Former Rep. Jolly said:

I mean, he wants the show, because the show will excite his base and honestly allow Donald Trump to continue to put the spotlight on Joe Biden and on Hunter Biden which politically works for Donald Trump, though there’s no parity between the conduct of Joe Biden and the impeachable conduct of Donald Trump, Donald Trump wants to make that case to his base and his base will accept it. Which is why, though, to your point about having a jury and a majority leader that has already expressed partiality and a willingness to rig this trial, I think Nancy Pelosi in withholding the articles needs to put a strong spotlight and almost put Mitch McConnell, not on trial like we’re talking about Donald Trump, but in the House, go big. Bring a heavy spotlight to the misconduct of Mitch McConnell. I think his confession that he would not be impartial in this trial is akin to when Kevin McCarthy admitted that the Benghazi hearings were only to sink Hillary Clinton. It is a fatal error by Mitch McConnell that needs to be part of history and part of the reason why the articles are not going over. It’s not just about the witnesses. It’s about the fact that the majority leader has said we will not have a fair trial in the United States Senate. That’s reason enough to withhold this and what we’ve seen from Mar-a-Lago this weekend, the singular trigger for Donald Trump is Nancy Pelosi and, to an extent, the impeachment articles that she now controls.

Mitch McConnell must be held accountable for undermining democracy

During his time in public office, particularly in recent years, Mitch McConnell has become the face of everything wrong with Washington.

Whether it’s bragging about denying Barack Obama a Supreme Court pick or calling himself the grim reaper of the Senate, McConnell has always been a sharp thorn in the side of democracy.

But the majority leader crossed a line when he admitted that he would happily violate his oath and conduct a sham trial to clear Trump. As former GOP Rep. David Jolly said, Democrats must hold him accountable for it.
Posted by babylonsister | Sun Dec 29, 2019, 12:55 PM (17 replies)

Graham Now Worries Giuliani's 'Information' From Ukraine Might Be Russian Propaganda

Graham Now Worries Giuliani’s ‘Information’ From Ukraine Might Be Russian Propaganda
By Cristina Cabrera
December 29, 2019 10:17 a.m.

Senate Judiciary Chair Lindsey Graham (R-SC), who was eager to hear whatever dirt Trump lawyer Rudy Giuliani claims to have on Joe Biden several weeks ago, now seems to have some misgivings.

In an interview with the Daily Beast published on Sunday, Graham advised Giuliani to have the information on Biden that he supposedly found in Ukraine vetted by the intelligence community in case the “intel” is merely part of Russia’s disinformation campaign.

“He has not shared any of that information with me,” Graham told the Daily Beast.

“My advice to Giuliani would be to share what he got from Ukraine with the IC to make sure it’s not Russia propaganda,” the Republican senator added. “I’m very suspicious of what the Russians are up to all over the world.”


Posted by babylonsister | Sun Dec 29, 2019, 11:37 AM (43 replies)

When young men in the military flash the OK sign, it's time to take the trolling 'joke' seriously


When young men in the military flash the OK sign, it's time to take the trolling 'joke' seriously
David Neiwert for Daily Kos
Daily Kos Staff
Saturday December 28, 2019 · 12:00 PM EST

At some point, both reporters and public officials are going to have to stop playing dumb when young white men pull stunts like publicly flashing the “OK” sign before television cameras and dressing up at school in Ku Klux Klan uniforms. Of course it’s deliberately racist, behind transparently phony denials uttered with a cynical nihilism that doesn’t disguise itself. The people who are in real position to know better are responding with hapless befuddlement, as though they can’t really tell what these young men are up to.

The juvenile “irony” pose behind which they hide, allowing them a kind of plausible-deniability narrative in which they really are just harmless people “trolling” in order to make a point of some kind, wore out a long time ago. The distance (including over time) between an “ironic” racist and a seriously dedicated racist is simply negligible, especially in terms of the toxic effects of their vile contributions, as it were, to public discourse.

Yes, it’s just an OK sign. But anyone using it today is making clear that they just don’t care if they’re mistaken for the serious white-nationalists who flash it, mass murderers like the Christchurch killer. As I explained with the SPLC, it’s at best a sign of being a troll, who is only a better human being than an express bigot by a small degree.

Cadets certainly have been drummed out of the officers’ corps for less than the trio who flashed the white-power OK sign at the Army-Navy game earlier this week. Even if any were able to produce evidence of active anti-racism (unlikely as that may be), the harm they inflicted on the institutions they supposedly represent is incalculable.

Because now Americans around the world are wondering: Are we harboring closeted white supremacists in our military, particularly in its highest ranks? That’s not a question any patriotic American wants to be asking. Because of these clowns, we have to.

Particularly not with the news, first reported by Christopher Mathias at HuffPost, that the Senate had excised language intended to screen military enlistees for “white nationalism” from the annual National Defense Authorization Act.

The Senate’s version of the House-approved NDAA approved language intended to screen for “extremist and gang-related activity” that completely omitted the phrase “white nationalism,” a phrase pointedly inserted in the House after alarming reports in the media about the infiltration of military ranks by far-right white extremists.

There needs to be zero tolerance for this, not least because military training increases the likelihood of competence at terrorist action later, as the Timothy McVeigh example always reminds us. Prioritize screening both recruits and current ranks for this poison. And drum them out without hesitation. Nothing less than our national security is at stake here. It’s serious, and needs to be taken seriously.
Posted by babylonsister | Sat Dec 28, 2019, 07:52 PM (17 replies)

Beware Of Anonymous Republicans 'Concerned' About McConnell's Impeachment Plans


12/28/19 6:30am
Beware Of Anonymous Republicans 'Concerned' About McConnell's Impeachment Plans
Be skeptical. Be very skeptical of anonymous Republicans who won't stand up, but instead lurk in the background with "concerns."
By Laura Clawson

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has announced that he is “not an impartial juror” and pledged to conduct an impeachment trial of Donald Trump in “total coordination” with the White House. McConnell’s stance has Republican Sen. Lisa Murkowski “disturbed,” while reliable eyeroll-generator Sen. Susan Collins said she “hopes” that Senate leaders will negotiate a fair trial process. But what about every other Republican senator?

Some, like Sen. Lindsey Graham, have said they’re with McConnell—not impartial jurors, just here to serve Donald Trump. But there are continuing reports that some cowardly Republicans aren’t happy, even as they stay silent.

Democratic Sen. Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut says, “I've talked to anywhere from five to 10 of my colleagues who have very severe misgivings about the direction that Mitch McConnell is going in denying a full, fair proceeding with witnesses and documents. My hope is that they will say publicly what Sen. Murkowski did, and really hold Mitch McConnell accountable.”

No credit—none—to these Republicans until the day they come out and actually force McConnell to conduct a fair Senate trial. Until then, they’re just anonymous cowards.

Published with permission of Daily Kos
Posted by babylonsister | Sat Dec 28, 2019, 10:34 AM (19 replies)

Don Imus, Legendary 'Imus in the Morning' Host, Dies at 79


Don Imus, Legendary 'Imus in the Morning' Host, Dies at 79
2:19 PM PST 12/27/2019 by Katie Kilkenny

The controversial radio personality passed away on Friday morning at Baylor Scott and White Medical Center in College Station, Texas.

Legendary, cowboy hat-wearing radio personality Don Imus, who hosted the radio show Imus in the Morning for nearly 50 years, has died. Imus was 79.

Imus passed away on Friday morning at Baylor Scott and White Medical Center in College Station, Texas, after being hospitalized on Christmas Eve, a representative said. The cause of death was not given.

"Don loved and adored Deirdre, who unconditionally loved him back, loved spending his time watching Wyatt become a highly skilled, champion rodeo rider and calf roper, and loved and supported Zachary, who first met the Imus family at age 10 when he participated in the Imus Ranch program for kids with cancer, having battled and overcome leukemia, eventually becoming a member of the Imus family and Don and Deirdre’s second son," Imus' family said in a statement.

Imus is survived by his wife of 25 years, Deirdre, sons Wyatt and Lt. Zachary Don Cates and daughters Nadine, Ashley, Elizabeth and Toni.

A small service for Imus will be held in the next few days. The family requests that any donations be made to the Imus Ranch Foundation, which supports charities for children with cancer and other major illnesses.

More to come.
Posted by babylonsister | Fri Dec 27, 2019, 06:50 PM (11 replies)

Nearly Half of Americans Think the Country Is Worse Off Now Than at the Start of 2019, Poll Shows


Nearly Half of Americans Think the Country Is Worse Off Now Than at the Start of 2019, Poll Shows
By Blake Dodge On 12/27/19 at 2:02 PM EST

About 44 percent of Americans think the United States is in a worse place now compared with the start of 2019, according to a survey by YouGov, an international data and analytics group.

In terms of the "general state of the country," only 16 and 17 percent of the more than 25,600 respondents said the country was in a much and somewhat better place, respectively.

Those numbers fluctuate depending on the respondent's age, wealth and political affiliation. Democrats are particularly unhappy with the state of affairs, which is likely related to a Republican-controlled White House or even President Donald Trump's impeachment.


According to Pew's polling, older Americans tend to worry about the country's moral values, demographic shifts and reduced Social Security benefits and long-term care. The same survey project said the "majority of Americans have little confidence that the federal government and their elected officials are up to meeting the major challenges that lie ahead."

Notably, it's the wealthiest Americans surveyed by YouGov who are the most worried about the country. Perhaps due to a bumpy year in the financial markets, Trump's trade war with China, recession fears or slowing economic growth, nearly a third of respondents who make more than $80,000 a year think the country was in a much worse place, compared with only 24 percent of those who make less than $40,000 a year.
Posted by babylonsister | Fri Dec 27, 2019, 05:32 PM (6 replies)

The Christmas Eve Confessions of Chuck Todd

PressThink, a project of the Arthur L. Carter Journalism Institute at New York University, is written by Jay Rosen.

The Christmas Eve Confessions of Chuck Todd
That disinformation was going to overtake Republican politics was discoverable years before he says he discovered it.
26 Dec 2019 1:40 am

‘Round midnight on Christmas eve, Rolling Stone posted a short interview with Chuck Todd, host of “the longest running show on television,” NBC’s Meet the Press.

Its contents were explosive, embarrassing, enraging, and just plain weird.

Three years after Kellyanne Conway introduced the doctrine of “alternative facts” on his own program, a light went on for Chuck Todd. Republican strategy, he now realized, was to make stuff up, spread it on social media, repeat it in your answers to journalists — even when you know it’s a lie with crumbs of truth mixed in — and then convert whatever controversy arises into go-get-em points with the base, while pocketing for the party a juicy dividend: additional mistrust of the news media to help insulate President Trump among loyalists when his increasingly brazen actions are reported as news.

Todd repeatedly called himself naive for not recognizing the pattern, itself an astounding statement that cast doubt on his fitness for office as host of Meet the Press. While the theme of the interview was waking up to the truth of Republican actions in the information warfare space, Todd went to sleep on the implications of what he revealed. It took him three years to understand a fact about American politics that was there on the surface, unconcealed since the day after inauguration. Many, many interpreters had described it for him during those lost years when he could not bring himself to believe it. (I am one.)

You cannot call that an oversight. It’s a strategic blindness that he superintended. By “strategic blindness” I mean what people mean when they quote Upton Sinclair: “It is difficult to get a man to understand something when his salary depends upon his not understanding it.”


It’s not naive of him. It’s malpractice. Chuck Todd’s entire brand is based on the claim that he understands politics. Since 2007 he has been NBC’s political director, which means he has influence over all coverage. He is literally the in-house expert on the subject. You don’t get to claim you are naive about politics when you have these kinds of positions. It would be like a chief risk officer saying, “I didn’t understand the gamble we were taking.” Well, that’s your job.


Posted by babylonsister | Fri Dec 27, 2019, 03:52 PM (14 replies)

...McConnell, Says Senator Thinks He's 'A Judge Impaneling An All-White Jury for a Klansman Trial'

Ex-WH Ethics Lawyer Slams McConnell, Says Senator Thinks He's 'A Judge Impaneling An All-White Jury for a Klansman Trial'
By Melissa Lemieux On 12/27/19 at 12:21 AM EST

During a panel discussion on CNN, Richard Painter, the former chief White House ethics lawyer who worked under George W. Bush, got into a bit of a verbal dust-up with former senator Rick Santorum while the two were discussing Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and the impeachment trial of President Donald Trump.

"This trial is going to have to take place in the Senate as a fair trial. It is presided over by the chief justice of the United States. This is a trial, it's not a political game. The oath of loyalty is to the United States of America, not to Donald Trump. These senators, Democrats and Republicans, have an obligation to hear the facts, to hear witnesses, and make a decision," said Painter.

"For Mitch McConnell to say he's working with the White House, coordinating with the defendant in this trial before the trial has even begun is atrocious. He may think he's a judge impaneling an all-white jury for a Klansman trial in Mississippi in 1965. That's not the kind of trial we have," he concluded.


Posted by babylonsister | Fri Dec 27, 2019, 10:01 AM (26 replies)
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