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Hometown: NY
Home country: US
Current location: Florida
Member since: Mon Sep 6, 2004, 09:54 PM
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Journal Archives

Trump's Violent Rhetoric Deserves Outrage, Not Yawns

Trump’s Violent Rhetoric Deserves Outrage, Not Yawns
The former president who has incited violence in the past sure looks like he’s doing it again. Maybe let’s take it seriously this time, before someone gets killed?
Matt Lewis

Senior Columnist
Published Mar. 28, 2023 4:28AM ET


Don’t take my word for it, take the word of Jan. 6 rioters, who effectively said they were just following Trump’s orders when they beat cops with flag poles, and such.

Yes, when it comes to martial rhetoric, sometimes people get carried away with the pearl-clutching and the hand-wringing. Politicians “target” voters, which has nothing to do with wanting to shoot them. Harmless metaphors abound in the political (and political journalism) world.

That’s not what is happening here.

Indeed, we should all be more concerned about Trump’s rhetoric. The trouble is that many of us have become inured to it (how many Americans even remember Trump’s 2022 declaration that Sen. Minority Leader Mitch McConnell has a “death wish”?). Meanwhile, Trump’s defenders have adopted a strategically blasé attitude that mocks any concern as being overblown.

Again, though, as the old saying goes, “It’s not paranoia when they really are out to get you.”
Those of us who warn of potential violence are not overreacting—as evidenced by the fact that political violence is a rising trend in America—particularly when it is stoked by Trump.


Posted by babylonsister | Tue Mar 28, 2023, 07:14 AM (14 replies)

Don't call them 'witch hunts.' Most Americans say investigations into Trump are fair

Don't call them 'witch hunts.' Most Americans say investigations into Trump are fair
March 27, 20235:00 AM ET
Heard on Morning Edition
Domenico Montanaro - 2015
Domenico Montanaro

A majority of Americans say the multiple criminal investigations into former President Donald Trump's conduct are fair, despite Trump's continued efforts claiming they are conspiracies against him, the latest NPR/PBS NewsHour/Marist poll finds.

The survey of more than 1,300 adults also found that despite the love for him among Republicans, Trump remains highly disliked, continues to struggle mightily with independents — and 6 in 10 Americans don't want him to be president again.

The results come as Trump has raised the specter of his potential arrest, due to a hush money investigation out of New York. Trump faces at least three other criminal investigations — two federal, stemming from classified documents found at his Florida home and one examining his role in the Jan. 6 insurrection, as well as one from Georgia, looking at his pressure campaign to overturn the results of the 2020 presidential election he lost.

They also come as Trump held his first presidential campaign rally Saturday in Waco, Texas, where he baselessly described the investigations as the result of "prosecutorial misconduct."


Posted by babylonsister | Mon Mar 27, 2023, 11:36 AM (4 replies)

digby: Mafia ethics


Mafia ethics
Published by digby on March 26, 2023


Omertà (/oʊˈmɛərtə/, Italian pronunciation: [omerˈta]) is a Southern Italian code of silence and code of honor and conduct that places importance on silence in the face of questioning by authorities or outsiders; non-cooperation with authorities, the government, or outsiders, especially during criminal investigations; and willfully ignoring and generally avoiding interference with the illegal activities of others (i.e., not contacting law enforcement or the authorities when one is aware of, witness to, or even the victim of certain crimes). It originated and remains common in Southern Italy, where banditry or brigandage and Mafia-type criminal organizations (like the Camorra, Cosa Nostra, ‘Ndrangheta, Sacra Corona Unita and Società foggiana) have long been strong. Similar codes are also deeply rooted in other areas of the Mediterranean, including Malta, Crete in Greece, and Corsica, all of which share a common or similar historic culture with Southern Italy.

Retaliation against informers is common in criminal circles, where they are often described by terms such as “rats” or “snitches”.

By the way, Huckabee is a Baptist preacher…
Posted by babylonsister | Sun Mar 26, 2023, 10:04 PM (0 replies)

Kids in Wisconsin wanted to perform a song about love and acceptance. Admin said no.


Kids in Wisconsin wanted to perform a song about love and acceptance. Admin said no.
Community (This content is not subject to review by Daily Kos staff prior to publication.)
Sunday March 26, 2023 · 6:45 PM EDT
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The madness literally never ends. In yet another chapter of “you couldn’t make this shit up if you tried”, songs sung by top artists about love and acceptance are deemed too “controversial”, according to school administrators in Waukesha, WI where first graders chose song “Rainbowland”, originally performed by national treasure Dolly Parton and ex-Mouseketeer Miley Cyrus to sing for their school’s annual spring concert.

And what was so “controversial” about the lyrics?

"Rainbowland" includes the lyrics: "Living in a Rainbowland, The skies are blue and things are grand, Wouldn't it be nice to live in paradise, Where we're free to be exactly who we are, Let's all dig down deep inside, Brush the judgment and fear aside, Make wrong things right, And end the fight, 'Cause I promise ain't nobody gonna win."

So the kids chose another song. And the result?
Thankfully parents spoke up and the kids were actually allowed to sing “Rainbow Connection” in the end.

Schindler told the Times that the school board had a "conservative flip" in recent years and has since instituted "some policy changes that have been causing some controversy in our community."

"One of those is a controversial topics policy saying that teachers can't have any kind of signage that could be deemed political," Schindler told the Times. "Discussion of pronouns with students was another thing that came up. And teachers aren't allowed to wear rainbows."

Ah, well, that explains everything. Gotta love all that freedom and liberty under Republican rule, huh? Remember this well when you turn 18, kids.
Posted by babylonsister | Sun Mar 26, 2023, 08:21 PM (9 replies)

Snopes.com had to debunk a story from The Onion because people on the Internet are amazingly stupid


Dumb People
Snopes.com had to debunk a story from The Onion because people on the Internet are amazingly stupid
By Sky Palma
Posted on March 25, 2016

Earlier this week, the beloved satire site The Onion posted a headline and photo that claimed hundreds of Cubans had clung to the wings of Air Force One, in an attempt to come back to the U.S. along with President Obama in the wake of his historical Cuba trip.

You’d think most social media users know about The Onion, but in true Internet fashion, that apparently isn’t the case. According to the urban legend and hoax debunking website Snopes.com, not everyone got the joke.

Thanks to an influx of emails from confused readers, the site was forced to run a post labeling the claim as “False.”

From Snopes:

Social media users have often unwittingly shared fake news articles published by web sites that exist solely to traffic in outlandish false stories, but The Onion began in the pre-Internet days as a printed humor publication and evolved to become the premier online satirical web site (i.e., a site that aims to make readers laugh, not to be fooled).

The Onion‘s item about Cuban refugees clinging to Air Force One consisted of a photograph and headline with no content, as did a previous (and similarly confusing) share from the site holding that SeaWorld houses orcas in large plastic bags while cleaning their tanks. A previous Onion article about a SeaWorld show that was “Just Elephant Drowning in Large Tank of Water with No Explanation” prompted a number of social media users to object to the imaginary described practice, as did another item about a teen whose parents intended to euthanize her because she was only “capable of texting and rolling her eyes.”

If people believe that airplanes are spraying us with chemicals and that the Sandy Hook massacre was a hoax, why shouldn’t they be duped by stories from The Onion?

Posted by babylonsister | Sat Mar 25, 2023, 12:27 PM (38 replies)

Judge Gives Trump Mafia Boss Treatment And Says So


Judge Gives Trump Mafia Boss Treatment And Says So
Community (This content is not subject to review by Daily Kos staff prior to publication.)
Thursday March 23, 2023 · 2:29 PM EDT
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The Federal judge handling E. Jean Carroll’s rape/defamation lawsuits against Donald Trump just gave Trump a treatment generally reserved for mafia bosses and terrorists. Judge Lewis Kaplan ordered that the jurors in the case will be anonymous. The judge did so, not on the request of either party, but sua sponte (the court’s own motion). The judge acknowledged that such treatment was unusual and “most often” reserved for “terrorism and organized crime cases.”

However, the judge cited Trump’s long history of attempting to intimidate courts, witnesses, and even individual jurors as justifying this unusual step.

“it bears mention that Mr. Trump repeatedly has attacked courts, judges, various law enforcement officials and other public officials, and even individual jurors in other matters.”

A very lengthy footnote, filling most of a page provides examples of that. Footnote 7 on page 4 is definitely worth a read.

Another example cited by the court is Trump’s reaction in the last week to reports that Alvin Bragg’s grand jury in Manhattan is about to indict Trump. The judge noted his court is next door to Bragg’s.

“Mr. Trump’s quite recent reaction to what he perceived as an imminent threat of indictment by a grand jury sitting virtually next door to this Court was to encourage ‘protest’ and to urge people to ‘take our country back.’ That reaction reportedly has been perceived by some as incitement to violence.”

The court continues.

“In these circumstances, this Court is obliged to consider the likely effect on jurors of the matters just described, similar events in the relatively recent past, and the likely future course of events, including the inevitable extensive media coverage. And it cannot properly ignore the significant risk that jurors selected to serve in this case will be affected by concern that they could be targeted for unwanted media attention, outside pressure, and retaliation and harassment from persons unhappy with any verdict that might be returned.”

The motion was not objected to by either party, though news organizations did citing the customary approach of open courts. In rejecting the medias concerns the judge made clear that Trump history of “violent rhetoric” outweighed even the Constitutional concerns raised by the media:

“Mr. Trump himself has made critical statements on social media regarding the grand jury foreperson in Atlanta, Georgia, and the jury foreperson in the Roger Stone criminal case. And this properly may be viewed in the context of Mr. Trump’s many statements regarding individual judges, the judiciary in general, and other public officials, as well as what reports have characterized as ‘violent rhetoric’ by Mr. Trump including before his presidency. In these circumstances, the common law and constitutional arguments made by the News and the AP are unpersuasive.”

This is what a judge is compelled to for a civil trial of a former President of the United States. The trial is scheduled for April 25th.


Today Trump used Truth Social to threaten Alvin Bragg with a baseball bat.
Posted by babylonsister | Fri Mar 24, 2023, 07:37 AM (32 replies)

Eric Swalwell Rips Republicans For Targeting Gun Safety Activists While Trying To Free 1/6 Terrorist


Posted on Thu, Mar 23rd, 2023 by Jason Easley
Eric Swalwell Rips Republicans For Targeting Gun Safety Activists While Trying To Free 1/6 Terrorists

At a House Oversight Committee hearing, Rep. Eric Swalwell (D-CA) called out Republicans for arresting gun safety activists while attempting to free 1/6 terrorists.


After Republicans had gun safety activists removed from the hearing, Rep. Swalwell said:

I want to thank the activists who have stayed in this fight for reasonable gun safety and thank you for showing up today. I am also sorry that you were targeted earlier. The same people that want to have you arrested and put in jail want to go to the DC jail this week to take the January 6th terrorists out. If you can believe that or not.

Probably shouldn’t be surprised that this hearing has deviated to include Hunter Biden’s laptop, and for such as serious issue like this, I would encourage my colleagues to go through Hunter Biden’s laptop on their own time. Whatever they want to see in there, they should do on their own time, and not when we have such an important topic like gun safety.

Republicans want to arrest and jail people who are trying to save lives by demanding common sense gun protection legislation, while at the same time, Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene is trying to get the Oversight Committee to go to the DC jail to lobby for the release of domestic terrorists who attacked the Capitol on January 6th.

In the Republican mind, the dangerous threat isn’t coming from the people who killed police officers while attempting to stage a coup to keep Trump in power. The real threat is from people who don’t want kids to die at school or families to be gunned down at the grocery store, movie theater, or church.

Making it more difficult for would-be mass shooters to get automatic weapons is not a threat to America.

Republicans are siding with the terrorists and enabling mass shooters nationwide.
Posted by babylonsister | Fri Mar 24, 2023, 07:16 AM (2 replies)

Lauren Boebert Shows Human Fetus Photos During Endangered Species Hearing


Lauren Boebert Shows Human Fetus Photos During Endangered Species Hearing
The far-right Colorado congresswoman pondered Democrats putting babies on the at-risk register during a House hearing stunt.
Lee Moran
Lee Moran
Mar 24, 2023, 04:15 AM EDT


But the anti-abortion supporter began her comments with an attack on Democrats and appeared to suggest their stance on abortion meant babies should be included on the register, reported Colorado Public Radio.

“I do want to say before my opening remarks, you know, since we’re talking about the Endangered Species Act, I’m just wondering if my colleagues on the other side would put babies on the endangered species list,” she said, holding up the images.

“These babies were born in Washington D.C., full term,” Boebert claimed. “I don’t know, maybe that’s a way we can save some children here in the United States.”

Boebert then railed against the Endangered Species Act, claiming it has been “weaponized by extremists, extremist environmentalists, to obstruct common sense multiple-use activities that they disagree with.”

Boebert’s photo stunt drew condemnation on social media, where she was slammed as “beyond deplorable.”
Posted by babylonsister | Fri Mar 24, 2023, 07:01 AM (19 replies)

Sinema Tears Into Dems as 'Old Dudes Eating Jell-O'


Sinema Tears Into Dems as ‘Old Dudes Eating Jell-O’
Dan Ladden-Hall
News Correspondent
Published Mar. 23, 2023 7:40AM ET

Turns out that Ron DeSantis isn’t the only political figure making dessert-based headlines. Kyrsten Sinema (I-AZ) has allegedly been invoking a different sweet treat while savaging her Democratic colleagues in conversations with Republicans behind closed doors this year, according to Politico. At one reception, Sinema reportedly told a group of GOP lobbyists why she stopped attending her caucus’ weekly luncheons in the Capitol. “Those lunches were ridiculous,” she said, according to an attendee. “Old dudes are eating Jell-O, everyone is talking about how great they are. I don’t really need to be there for that.” She went on to joke that: “The Northerners and the Westerners put cool whip on their Jell-O and the Southerners put cottage cheese.” At the same fundraiser, Sinema also allegedly made an apparent swipe at Biden’s former White House Chief of Staff Ron Klain by “quickly flash[ing] her middle finger in the air” while discussing how Klain had phoned her to talk about a vote last summer.
Posted by babylonsister | Thu Mar 23, 2023, 10:42 AM (26 replies)

Inside Ron DeSantis's Plan to Ride Anti-vaxxism to the White House

How in the hell are all those covid deaths, fairly well documented, ignored??

Inside Ron DeSantis’s Plan to Ride Anti-vaxxism to the White House
He was for the COVID-19 vaccines before he was against them, but now Florida’s governor is all-in on vaccine skepticism—and hoping to use the issue to outflank Trump on the right. With the presidential primaries looming, and MAGA activists angling to turn Trump against the vaccines he helped fast-track, experts fear anti-vaxxism could soon become an official plank of the Republican Party.
By Katherine Eban
March 21, 2023

“It Is Against the Law to Mislead”

On December 14, 2020, Florida governor Ron DeSantis, wearing a mask, watched expectantly as a FedEx truck backed up to a loading dock at Tampa General Hospital. The truck carried precious cargo: boxes of the very first COVID-19 vaccines. With a flourish, DeSantis signed the FedEx manifest. “Today, we will have shots going in arms,” he proudly declared.

At the time, Republicans across the country were eager to share credit for a singular feat in President Donald Trump’s otherwise disastrous handling of the pandemic: the record-speed development of COVID-19 vaccines that offered hope of a return to normal life.

By the end of last year, however, DeSantis’s vaccine cheerleading was a distant memory. On December 13, almost exactly two years after the FedEx delivery, he petitioned the Florida Supreme Court to let him empanel a statewide grand jury to investigate COVID-19 vaccine makers, particularly Pfizer and Moderna. “It is against the law to mislead and misrepresent, particularly when you’re talking about the efficacy of a drug,” DeSantis said, comparing the vaccine push to the profiteering that drove the deadly opioid epidemic.

In January, the grand jury went to work looking for dark intent or false claims behind the lifesaving vaccines. It is slated to report its findings by January 2024. That would be just in time to potentially influence the outcome of the Republican presidential primaries, in which DeSantis is widely seen as a leading challenger to Trump, even though he hasn’t yet officially declared his candidacy.


Posted by babylonsister | Wed Mar 22, 2023, 08:52 PM (1 replies)
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