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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, 09:54 PM
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Journal Archives

Waves

This was sent to me by a pal. My dad died in June, so this will be the first Christmas without him.

https://www.thatericalper.com/2015/08/16/person-is-asking-for-advice-hn-how-to-deal-with-grief-this-reply-is-incredible/?fbclid=IwAR0Bn3s4uT6NrkpMKlnp4B6_QhB7g8gUWnHC6n01TbDFosQuRWgYwL-ui10

Posted by babylonsister | Sat Dec 21, 2019, 12:31 PM (14 replies)

The A to Z of Things Trump Could and Should Have Been Impeached For


The A to Z of Things Trump Could and Should Have Been Impeached For
Only two articles of impeachment? Here are 26 impeachable Trump offenses that were inexplicably overlooked or ignored by the House of Representatives.
December 20, 2019 Mehdi Hasan The Intercept


HURRAH! On Wednesday evening, Donald Trump became the third president of the United States to be impeached. The House of Representatives voted 230-197 to charge Trump with abuse of power and 229-198 to charge him with obstruction of Congress.

It was a major moment in this car crash of a presidency — and a major achievement for House Democrats. Still, I couldn’t help but be disappointed that there were only two articles of impeachment passed against the president. Two? That’s it? Why were other Trumpian offenses not included? For context, it’s worth recalling that there were a whopping 11 articles of impeachment passed against Andrew Johnson in 1868. With Richard Nixon in 1974, the House Judiciary Committee considered five articles of impeachment, before passing three of them. With Bill Clinton in 1998, the House of Representatives voted on four articles and approved two of them.

Are we expected to believe that House Democrats really think Trump has only committed two impeachable offenses? Even the president himself seems to have been caught off guard by the Democrats’ very narrow approach to impeachment. “Frankly, I think he’s a little surprised it’s the Ukraine thing that’s done it,” a White House official told CNN.

The harsh reality, of course, is that Trump commits impeachable offenses on nearly a weekly basis. So here is an A to Z of such offenses — by issue and/or by crime — that were inexplicably overlooked or ignored by the House of Representatives.

AMAZON

Trump has personally and repeatedly instructed the Postmaster General to double shipping rates for Amazon, in an attempt to inflict billions of dollars of new costs on founder and CEO Jeff Bezos, who also owns the Washington Post. “Some administration officials,” reported the Post in May 2018, “say several of Trump’s attacks aimed at Amazon have come in response to articles in The Post that he didn’t like.”


BIGOTRY

This is a president who has referred to African countries as “shitholes;” to Mexicans as “rapists;” to neo-Nazis as “very fine people.” To be clear: bigotry, racism, and white nationalism are impeachable offenses. Ask Andrew Johnson.


more...

https://portside.org/2019-12-20/z-things-trump-could-and-should-have-been-impeached?fbclid=IwAR025RAC0c_NpwjYPwQPfgZk8IAVwXc84cqlewuKwlrlGTSA5rc8Fg87KlM
Posted by babylonsister | Sat Dec 21, 2019, 12:07 PM (0 replies)

GOP Sen. Grassley says Mitch McConnell sabotaged support for his drug pricing bill



GOP Sen. Grassley says Mitch McConnell sabotaged support for his drug pricing bill
Published Wed, Dec 18 20194:42 PM ESTUpdated Wed, Dec 18 20196:10 PM EST
Berkeley Lovelace Jr.


Republican Sen. Chuck Grassley said Wednesday that Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is responsible for his colleagues’ apparent lack of enthusiasm about his bipartisan bill to lower drug prices.

When asked by reporters during a briefing why more Senate Republicans haven’t supported the legislation, the Senate Finance Committee chairman said because McConnell “asked them not to.”

“The president wants it!” Grassley said, according to a recording of the briefing.

Grassley and McConnell have reportedly been at odds over the bipartisan measure, which has support from President Donald Trump and many Senate Democrats.

When asked for comment, a spokesperson for McConnell directed CNBC to a report where McConnell is quoted saying the Senate’s path forward on drug costs is still “under discussion” and he is “looking to do something on drug pricing.”

Grassley and ranking Democrat Ron Wyden, of Oregon, advanced the broad drug pricing bill through committee in July. Looking to gain more Republican support, the lawmakers unveiled a revamped version of the bill earlier this month. The bill would make changes to Medicare by adding an out-of-pocket maximum for beneficiaries and capping drug price increases at the rate of inflation, among other measures.

more...

https://www.cnbc.com/2019/12/18/grassley-says-mitch-mcconnell-sabotaged-support-for-his-drug-pricing-bill.html?fbclid=IwAR3stICRDYRCwDIbFcG9nzeaQjObyVqvJpHyQlnOhIjmcUQKVY4-0HlPumM
Posted by babylonsister | Sat Dec 21, 2019, 10:43 AM (6 replies)

Official Statement From Mormon Women for Ethical Government on the House Impeachment Vote

https://www.mormonwomenforethicalgovernment.org/official-statement-from-mormon-women-for-ethical-government-on-the-house-impeachment-vote/?fbclid=IwAR0DgEVsUeqOlyJQz1L7LdCCD7yC43czniA0cuS4xsrCkS91_-MBUP-b3LM


Official Statement From Mormon Women for Ethical Government on the House Impeachment Vote
December 18, 2019


We assert that our most sacred civic expression is the casting of an individual vote. Any president or leader who forces political support and fails to honor and protect the free and legitimate elections on which our republic rests has lost the moral right to govern. By attempting to compel Ukraine to announce investigations benefitting only his re-election efforts, President Trump forced every American taxpayer to become an unwitting contributor to his political campaign and a supporter of his re-election.

Regardless of the behavior of any other political actor in either party, the president of the United States is never justified in bringing our common resources and might to bear against a political rival. As an organization committed to the defense of ethical government, we feel an urgent need to speak in defense of our norms and institutions. The House of Representatives produced the required articles, following procedures previously established, and voted through a legislatively approved process. They have fulfilled their constitutional obligation.

When presented to the Senate, these articles deserve a full and fair trial with impartial jurors, conducted as required by the Constitution. Even in an era of polarized partisan politics, truth is discernible and powerful. The Senate must resist all impulse to reduce this process to gamesmanship and theater and instead must pursue truth by compelling testimony from the actors at the heart of this inquiry. The president himself must honor his sworn duty to uphold the law by providing the documents Congress has subpoenaed and instructing his staff to testify. If he is innocent, their testimonies will be exculpatory. Subversion of this process, regardless of outcome, represents a subversion of justice.

At MWEG we are committed peacemakers. However, we recognize that true peace is not an absence of conflict. Rather, it requires, as Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. taught, a courageous defense of truth and justice. Some argue that an impeachment process must be bi-partisan before it is legitimate. Some say that without Congressional Republican support, investigating the president would be too divisive. We reject this argument as one devoid of moral authority. Peace cannot be purchased so cheaply. Effective leadership does not sacrifice truth and principle on the altar of consensus. Instead, it gives voice to truth and lends courage to those who are fearful. Our nation is truly indivisible only when there is liberty and justice for all.

While we speak to all of our fellow citizens and elected officials, we call specifically upon our co-religionists Senators Mike Lee (R-Utah), Mitt Romney (R-Utah), Mike Crapo (R-Idaho), and Tom Udall (D-New Mexico) to honor their oaths of office. We remind them that this oath qualifies them for service and was taken in the name of God. The oath of office does not require our representatives to protect the economy, their political party, their seat, their ambition, or even the president. It demands that those sworn to office will uphold the Constitution and fairly adjudicate on behalf of every citizen. We expect them to honor that oath, and we will hold them to account with our votes.


# # #

Mormon Women for Ethical Government (MWEG) is a nonprofit organization dedicated to inspiring women of faith to be ambassadors of peace who transcend partisanship and courageously advocate for ethical government. MWEG is not affiliated with or endorsed by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. We do, however, fully sustain the leaders and doctrines of the Church.
Posted by babylonsister | Sat Dec 21, 2019, 10:36 AM (36 replies)

Yes, Republicans, The Impeachment Process Has Been A Partisan Sham - Because Of You

https://www.politicususa.com/2019/12/20/yes-republicans-impeachment-has-been-a-partisan-sham-because-of-you.html

Posted on Fri, Dec 20th, 2019 by Sean Colarossi
Opinion: Yes, Republicans, The Impeachment Process Has Been A Partisan Sham – Because Of You

snip//

All that matters to Republicans is getting a favorable prime-time segment on Fox News for having spent an entire impeachment hearing shouting Hunter Biden’s name as many times as humanly possible, no matter how ridiculous they look outside the MAGA bubble.

All that matters is getting the president to retweet a clip of them spewing Russian talking points on the House floor or comparing his impeachment to the crucifixion of Jesus.

All that matters is making sure they don’t upset the 73-year-old toddler in the White House and all the red hat-wearing Americans he’s suckered into supporting him.

Everything else – the rule of law, American values, national security – is secondary.


So, yes, Republicans, this impeachment process has been a hyper-partisan sham – and that’s before we even get to Mitch McConnell’s Senate circus.

But it’s played out this way not because of some deep-state, Democratic witch hunt. No, it’s a partisan sham because the Republican Party has sold its soul to a man whose entire presidency was built on a publicity stunt gone wrong
.

Now they’re in too deep to turn back – no matter how guilty they know he is.
Posted by babylonsister | Sat Dec 21, 2019, 10:24 AM (2 replies)

The Impeachment Time Bomb

https://politicalwire.com/2019/12/20/the-impeachment-time-bomb/

The Impeachment Time Bomb
December 20, 2019 at 10:40 pm EST By Taegan Goddard


Carl Bernstein on CNN:

“There are Republicans who have a feeling that this impeachment process thus far… represents a time bomb, that this is not over, None of us knows where this is going. The impact of this continues into the election, into the campaign, and there is a tremendous amount of information out there that journalists are working on, that we do not know about yet.”

“The Ukraine allegations and the clues provided by what occurred are a road map for all kinds of investigators in the coming months. And I believe — and I’ve talked to some people — that there are people in the Senate who understand that this might be a time bomb. That there is time remaining until the election. Obviously, to the trial, too. I’m not saying that necessarily it is going to be a time bomb that explodes, but I think there’s a real possibility of it…”
Posted by babylonsister | Sat Dec 21, 2019, 09:55 AM (15 replies)

Federal judge rejects bid to kill Keystone pipeline lawsuits

https://thehill.com/policy/energy-environment/475582-federal-judge-rejects-bid-to-kill-keystone-pipeline-lawsuits?fbclid=IwAR31xkwjiJGekPr9A-bjTJa_EvJIpZXOGnGcJqErzz1FkAsJ0m2_JswqtU0



Federal judge rejects bid to kill Keystone pipeline lawsuits
By Tal Axelrod - 12/20/19 09:00 PM EST


A federal judge ruled Friday that environmentalists and indigenous tribes can proceed with lawsuits against the Trump administration’s approval of the Keystone XL oil pipeline from Canada.

U.S. District Judge Brian Morris, an Obama appointee, dismissed the government’s arguments that President Trump has total authority to approve the $8 billion pipeline and said that the Rosebud Sioux and Fort Belknap Indian tribes made credible claims that the line violated their treaty rights.

However, the judge did deny environmentalists’ requests that the court impose an injunction to block work on the pipeline, given that construction is not planned until the spring.

Morris first blocked work on the pipeline in 2018, leading the administration to issue a new permit earlier this year to try to circumvent the ruling.

Once finished, the 1,200-mile pipeline would deliver an estimated 830,000 barrels of crude daily from western Canada to the Gulf Coast.

Opponents of the line say that burning the tar sands oil that would be carried would exacerbate climate change and that the line and its construction would infringe on land considered sacred for indigenous tribes.

A part of the pipeline that has already been constructed spilled hundreds of thousands of gallons of crude oil into North Dakota in October.
Posted by babylonsister | Fri Dec 20, 2019, 10:39 PM (0 replies)

Baltimore City Council votes to rename courthouse after late Rep. Elijah Cummings

https://www.baltimoresun.com/politics/bs-md-pol-elijah-cummings-courthouse-20191217-jmt5b4uot5bytnaj3tkfxss6aq-story.html


Baltimore City Council votes to rename courthouse after late Rep. Elijah Cummings
By Talia Richman
Baltimore Sun |
Dec 17, 2019 | 8:22 AM


The Baltimore City Council voted Monday to rename a Baltimore courthouse after the the late U.S. Rep. Elijah Cummings.

Mayor Bernard C. “Jack” Young, who asked the council to push the legislation forward, intends to sign the bill and formally unveil the new name for Courthouse East as soon as possible.

Cummings served as chairman of the House Committee on Oversight and Reform and was a powerful advocate for Baltimore and civil rights. The Democrat died in October after several years of health problems, including cancer.

“It is most fitting that this building, in which Congressman Cummings fought for justice for his fellow citizens early in his career as an attorney, be named in his honor,” Young said in a statement after Cummings’ death. "It will stand in perpetuity as a monument to Cummings’ service to the common man, the rule of law in our society, and his commitment to economic justice for all.”

Posted by babylonsister | Fri Dec 20, 2019, 09:52 PM (6 replies)

Hotel lifts 17-year ban on 'worst guest ever' after horrifying seagull incident



https://megaphone.upworthy.com/p/worst-guest-ever-hotel?fbclid=IwAR1KYTnPFZjnYAe-jB5870MVwZ5a5iBfXOtli0Msm-cF7rUGdtTXD_-jz5I

Hotel lifts 17-year ban on 'worst guest ever' after horrifying seagull incident
By Mustafa Gatollari
6 hours ago


When you think of the people who get banned from hotels, you probably start picturing rock stars from the '70s who can't help but throw TV sets out of windows. And normally, you'd be totally right. There are plenty of examples in history of celebrities being outlawed from staying at hotel chains because of their wild behavior in the rooms.

And while rock stars and celebs might treat their hotel rooms with an amplified reckless abandon that most people have when they're on vacation, there are some situations where a room getting trashed is an honest-to-goodness mistake.

That's something Nick Burchill explained in a letter to the Fairmont Empress Hotel, apologizing for a series of unfortunate events involving seagulls, pepperoni, and feces, that occurred 17 years ago while he was attending a conference. The incident resulted in Burchill getting banned from the Empress, a decision he appealed in his letter.


"I officially applied to be allowed to stay at the Empress Hotel again," here wrote. "Here is my letter. Waiting for the reply. 18 years is a long time."

The letter goes as follows:

"28 March 2018

Dear Empress Hotel:

This may seem like and unusual request, but I write to you today, seeking a “pardon."

17 Years ago a string of unfortunate events led to my being banned from your hotel. I would like to explain the incident……

In 2001, I had recently joined my current employer, xxxxxxxxx and I was also in the Canadian Naval Reserve. xxxxxxxxx was hosting a customer conference at the Empress and it was my first event with the company."

"I told my Navy buddies that I was coming out West and I was asked to bring “Brother’s Pepperoni” from Halifax. It is a local delicacy. Because this was the Navy we were talking about, I brought enough for a ship. In a hurry, I had completely filled a suitcase with pepperoni for my friends. Some of it was wrapped in plastic, some in brown paper. I took whatever Brothers would sell me."


Source: facebook

"This is the bag that the airline misplaced.

The bag reappeared the next day. I knew that the pepperoni would still be “good”. It had only been at room temperature for a short time. It would, however, be quite some time before I could turn it over to my friends.

Just to be safe, I decided that I should keep it cool."

"My room was a nice, big, front-facing room on the fourth floor. It was well appointed, but it did not have a refrigerator. It was April, the air was chilly. An easy way to keep all of this food cool would be just to keep it next to an open window. I lifted one of the sashes and spread the packages of pepperoni out on the table and window sill. Then, I went for a walk…..for about 4 or 5 hours".

"When I had covered enough ground, I returned to the hotel. I remember walking down the long hall and opening the door to my room to find an entire flock of seagulls in my room. I didn’t have time to count, but there must have been 40 of them and they had been in my room, eating pepperoni for a long time."

"In case you were wondering, Brothers’ TNT Pepperoni does NASTY things to a seagull’s digestive system. As you would expect, the room was covered in seagull crap. What I did not realize until then was that Seagulls also drool. Especially when they eat pepperoni."

"I’m sure you have an image in your head. Now remember that I have just walked into the room and startled all of these birds. They immediately started flying around and crashing into things as they desperately tried to leave the room through the small opening by which they had entered."

"Less composed seagulls are attempting to leave through the other CLOSED windows. The result was a tornado of seagull excrement, feathers, pepperoni chunks and fairly large birds whipping around the room. The lamps were falling. The curtains were trashed. The coffee tray was just disgusting."

"I waded through the birds and opened the remaining windows. Most of the gulls left immediately. One tried to re-enter the room to grab another piece of pepperoni and in my agitated state, I took off one of my shoes and threw it at him.

Both the gull and the shoe went out the window.

By this time, I was down to one gull left in the room, but it was a big one, and it didn’t want to leave."

"As I chased it, it ran around the room with a big hunk of pepperoni in its gob.
In a moment of clarity, I grabbed a bath-towel and jumped it. It stated to freak-out so I wrapped it in the towel and threw it out of the window.

I had forgotten that Seagulls cannot fly when they are wrapped in a towel."

"This is all happening fairly quickly and this is mid-afternoon. The Empress hosts a very famous and very popular “High Tea”. I suspect this is where the large group of tourists was heading when they were struck by first my shoe, then a bound-up seagull (the seagull was unharmed, by the way).

Let’s go back to my little housekeeping issue. The room was BAD. There was a lot of damage."

"I was new to my company and I was really trying to make a good impression at this important event. I decided that I would carry on for now and handle this whole thing later. I then realized that I had only a few minutes before an important dinner and that I only had one shoe.

I made my way to one of the side doors and recovered both the shoe and the towel that were laying in some wet soil bear the walking path. The shoe was a mess. I took it back to the room. By this time, I had close the windows and the air was becoming quite ripe with the smell of digested pepperoni and fish."

"I went into the washroom and rinsed the mud off of my shoe. It cleaned-up nicely, but now I had one wet, dark shoe, and one dry, light coloured shoe."

"In retrospect, I should have just wet the dry shoe. Instead, I choose to dry the wet shoe using the little hairdryer. It was actually doing quite well. I had the hairdryer jammed in there and the shoe was drying quite nicely. Then, the phone rang."

"I walked into the next room to answer it and the power goes off. It turns-out that the hairdryer had vibrated free of the shoe and fallen into the sink full of water and the GFI didn’t seem be 100% functional. I don’t know how much of the hotel’s power I knocked-out, but at that point I decided I needed help."

"I called the front desk and asked for someone to come help me clean-up a mess. I can still remember the look on the lady’s face when she opened the door. I had absolutely no Idea what to tell her, so I just said “I’m sorry” and I went to dinner. When I came back, my things had been moved to a much smaller room.

I thought that was the end of it all until I was told that my company had received a letter banning me from the Empress. A ban that I have respected for almost 18 years."

"I have matured and I admit responsibility for my actions. I come to you, hat-in-hand to apologise for the damage I had indirectly come to cause and to ask you reconsider my lifetime ban from the property."


Source: facebook

"I hope that you will see fit to either grant me a pardon, or consider my 18 year away from the empress as “time served."

Thank you very much for your consideration.
Sincerely,

Nick Burchill"



And Nick did show up with the pepperoni in hand as a peace offering for the hotel staff to let him return to the hotel.

All's well that ends well for Nick, however, his honest, disgusting, and hilarious letter ultimately got his ban lifted from the Fairmont Empress hotel.

His story was shared over 3,000 times and people were tickled pink by Nick's worst day ever.

But it did cost them a room covered in seagull excrement, feathers, and vomited pepperoni. Ugh.
Posted by babylonsister | Fri Dec 20, 2019, 06:35 PM (4 replies)

Joe Conason: Will Republicans Risk a Rigged Trial?

https://www.creators.com/read/joe-conason/12/19/will-republicans-risk-a-rigged-trial?fbclid=IwAR1dNjKrcaV05z5s18UzVrTQQr8f8EkjWi_tGUldZOhle8g_UEeTmGRHoF4

Will Republicans Risk a Rigged Trial?
By Joe Conason
December 19, 2019 5 min read


When President Donald Trump's defenders aren't simply lying about the House impeachment inquiry — it all happened in a Capitol Hill basement with no Republicans present, as one of his lawyers told National Public Radio — they complain about the lack of firsthand witnesses to presidential abuse. They assume nobody will notice that Trump himself forbid any testimony by those with the most direct knowledge of his attempts to extort Ukraine.

For some reason, his defenders don't regard his silencing of potential witnesses as an admission of presidential guilt. Instead, they eagerly join him in presenting the nation with an insoluble dilemma: Impeachment can't be considered serious or fair without direct fact witnesses — and there can be no direct fact witnesses because the president has every right to squelch them.

In this way, the Republicans have abdicated their constitutional responsibility to oversee a president run amok. Their craven posture assures Trump that he can do whatever he wants, just as he has declared, while they exempt him from the rule of law.

Imitating the coarse example of their political boss, Republicans are increasingly brazen in expressing contempt for the Constitution. That document mandates a Senate trial following impeachment by the House, which doesn't mean a sham tribunal or an instant dismissal. Moreover, according to Article I, Section 3 of the Constitution and the Senate rules, every senator is mandated to "swear or affirm" an oath to do "impartial justice" in any impeachment proceeding.

snip//

It is still possible that Chief Justice John Roberts, who will preside over the impeachment trial as prescribed by the Constitution, will assert the Constitution's primacy over the partisan chicanery of the Senate Republican leaders? Roberts could insist that the Senate hold a real trial, with actual witnesses (including Rudy Giuliani, acting White House chief of staff Mick Mulvaney, former national security adviser John Bolton and others who have direct knowledge of Trump's misconduct). And if he hopes to maintain his reputation as anything other than a right-wing stooge — and stand up against the constitutional vandalism of his fellow Republicans — that is what he must do. We may soon see what he is made of and whether he is up to this historic moment.

Rules and clauses aside, the great majority of Americans of all political persuasions understand fairness when they see it — and most of them still have enough sense to detect a political fix, too. Polls show that even Republicans agree overwhelmingly that impeachment requires an actual trial, with evidence and witnesses. If McConnell, Graham and the Republican Senate foist a rigged proceeding on the public, they will risk a furious rebuke next November.
Posted by babylonsister | Fri Dec 20, 2019, 05:41 PM (8 replies)
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