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Member since: Mon Jul 11, 2005, 11:05 AM
Number of posts: 858

About Me

White, male, expatriate living in the mountains of central Taiwan, Oregon permanent address, 34 years of age. Born in St. Louis. Army brat lived all over. Veteran of the Korean War (sieved in Libya and Austin, Texas). Ph.D. in anthropology and linguistics, Indiana University. Career in linguistics and ESL at numerous US and foreign institutions. Spent most of my career as a director of English as a Second Language programs. Taught at National Chi Nan Unversity, Puli, Taiwan over the years 1995-2016. Retired as an orchard keeper with my life partner Judy Wu of the Bunun Austronesian tribe in our mountain hideaway cabin, High Mountain Orchards.

Journal Archives

Biden assembling White House transition team

By Jonathan Easley - 04/16/20 10:16 PM EDT

Former Vice President Joe Biden said Thursday that he’s begun assembling a White House transition team so he’ll be able to staff up quickly in the event that he defeats President Trump in the 2020 election.

Speaking at a digital fundraiser hosted by Jed Katz, the managing director of Javelin Partners, Biden said he first started putting together a transition team shortly after his string of primary victories on Super Tuesday in early March.

“I promise you that has already begun,” Biden said. “Sounds presumptuous. I don’t want to say we started thinking about it a month ago, we did, because that sounds like I was certain this was going to happen that I would be the nominee. I don’t want it to sound like that, but it has to happen and that’s why the transition team is already being put together.”

The transition team will play a role in guiding Biden’s appointments to his Cabinet and to lead the government agencies.

The former vice president did not give any indications about who was on the transition team or who he’s considering for top-level roles within his potential administration.

However, Biden said that he’s considering elevating several White House offices to Cabinet-level positions, singling out the Office of Science and Technology Policy, a global health security pandemic office and a potential climate change-focused role that “goes beyond the EPA.”

The former vice president said he might announce some of his Cabinet level picks before the election, and that he would take the advice given to him by former President Barack Obama to surround himself with people who “know more than you know.”

Biden also said he would consider Republicans for some top level positions within his administration.

“One advantage of being around a long time is you get to know an awful lot of people. In the private sector, in the public sector, people who are committed — first and foremost — are thoroughly honorable,” he said.

“I have had literally several hundred serious, serious players who have been held positions in every department in the federal government who have said, including some Republicans, who have said if you win, I want to come back. I’m ready to serve.”

This is what to expect from someone who will hit the ground running.

Go Joe!

Biden moves to lock down Dems. Next up: Elizabeth Warren

By NATASHA KORECKI and QUINT FORGEY, 04/14/2020 10:37 AM EDT. Updated: 04/14/2020 05:51 PM EDT

This is what I've been waiting for! Now where is Castro?


One after the other, Barack Obama and Bernie Sanders threw their support behind the former vice president — with Elizabeth Warren soon to follow, according to sources familiar with the discussions.

The rapid consolidation behind Biden offered the most powerful evidence yet of the party’s intent on avoiding the deadly fractiousness that contributed to Donald Trump’s victory four years ago.

“If there’s one thing we’ve learned as a country from moments of great crisis, it’s that the spirit of looking out for one another can’t be restricted to our homes or our workplaces, or our neighborhoods or our houses of worship. It also has to be reflected in our national government,” Obama said in a nearly 12-minute video message released Tuesday.

“The kind of leadership that’s guided by knowledge and experience, honesty and humility, empathy and grace,” he continued. “That kind of leadership doesn’t just belong in our state capitals and mayor’s offices. It belongs in the White House. And that’s why I’m so proud to endorse Joe Biden for President of the United States.”

I especially like this opinion (bold added):

The endorsements also underscored Biden’s role as a coalition builder, which Democrats intend to hold up as a major contrast to Trump.


All along, Biden has steadily collected the support of his major competitors by noting that he intends to serve as a bridge to the next generation of Democratic leadership. In recent weeks, the former vice president has taken on a more expansive role as the presumptive nominee and head of the party.

He has been careful to praise Sanders effusively, adopted major policy proposals from Warren and pledged to set up policy committees with Sanders to help adopt platforms that emerged from the Vermont senator’s progressive movement.

Biden’s efforts to unite the party included chiseling away at the iciness between Warren and himself. The two have personally spoken numerous times since Super Tuesday — and several times in recent weeks — sources familiar with the conversations say. The Massachusetts senator’s endorsement is “coming soon,” those sources said, and is merely awaiting a green light from Biden’s camp.

So the observation that Biden is spacing out the endorsements in consultation with others is true. I am sure Obama had a hand in it as well as he delayed endorsing before Sanders exit and he has done it before Warren's upcoming one. The working of calls to and from between camps seems to have been a masterful orchestration by Joe.
o Joe!

Looking for Warren / Castro endorsements. And a General Election Forum.

We need to speak with one voice to shout out the principle thatAmerica is a multiplicity of voices that all need to be heard in order for forge the path ahead to actualize the full scope of the principles on which out nation is founded.

Can we have a General Election forum NOW!

Sanders' endorsement of Joe Biden gave him what Hillary never had to unify the party--plenty of time

By Amie Parnes - 04/14/20 06:00 AM EDT

Biden is a unifier that has put together a broad coalition. His personal style in dealing with opponents and friends and colleagues gives him the winning edge. I am still amazed at how he brought together nearly all his primary opponents on stage in Michigan and Texas to small the early primaries. Unbelievable and unprecedented. And no his most ardent support--a friend==has sealed the deal on Democratic unity. Forget the rabid extremists. The good folks who supported Bernie will support Biden. The freak show opponents can fester and while but they speak to a narrow fringe that never really materialized when the votes came in. Those who did vote for Bernie==God bless them==are mostly people who are concerned about the future of our nation, its policies, and stand for the continued progress ov our nation. Biden will lead the way and Bernie will have his back as do virtually all of the other candidates (c'mon Warren and Castro!).


Democrats have fretted since their race began with two dozen candidates that they would have a hard time unifying around a single nominee, and that a divisive primary would hurt their eventual standard-bearer.

Their nightmare since the beginning of the race has been that a splintered Democratic Party would end up costing them another election to President Trump.

But the endorsement by Sanders — who made a surprise appearance on Biden’s livecast Monday afternoon — cleared the way for the former vice president to begin bringing the party together. And it happened in the middle of April.

“2020 will be more unifying than 2016 because of time being given to Vice President Biden to consolidate the party,” said Michael Trujillo, the Democratic strategist who worked on Clinton’s 2008 presidential campaign.

The moment helped calm the nerves of jittery Democrats, who have been having déjà vu when it comes to Sanders, a Democratic Socialist from Vermont who caucuses with Senate Democrats but has an ‘I’ next to his name and state.

“We need you in the White House and I will do all that I can to see that that happens, Joe,” Sanders said during the appearance.

It took Sanders just five days to endorse Biden after he announced the suspension of his campaign last week.

Some Democrats were quick to point out that Sanders didn’t officially endorse Clinton until July 12 — 36 days after he suspended his campaign.

“Democrats learned a vital lesson from the 2016 election: If you don't unite, you lose,” said former Rep. Steve Israel (D-N.Y.), who also led the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee.
Philippe Reines, who served as a longtime adviser to Clinton, said “there’s a lot more work to do and he has to put his money where his mouth is.”

“He needs to drop the hammer on any supporter — especially those associated with his campaign — who regurgitates Right Wing attacks on Biden,” Reines said. “That’s still happening so he needs to go medieval on anyone who does so, every time, without fail. The fish supports from the head as much as rots from the head.”

Still, while Biden has the advantage of time, political observers say the coronavirus pandemic is almost certain to throw another obstacle into the mix.

“After all the hoopla, he solidified his hold on the primary earlier than Clinton and has a party more unified because of a disliked incumbent. All of that is true,” said Julian Zelizer, a professor of history and public affairs at Princeton University. “But — and a big but— this is an election unlike any other.

Zelizer said Biden won’t be able to do traditional campaigning that helps promote candidates including rallies, town halls and extensive media interviews.

“The election itself will have less coverage than usual because of the pandemic, and it’s possible this is an extremely low turnout election because of social distancing,” he said. “So even though on paper he is in great shape, the nature of this campaign presents immense challenges.”

I know Joe, We know Joe, but most importantly Joe knows us.

Went over to General Discussion. Lots of folks I don't know there, but

looking for old friends from this forum there. We will swam them soon I suspect.

I came here as an old Clarkie. Back then I posted mostly on Daily Kos. Discovered this thread this time round and found my home there.

Looking forward to the General Election Forum whenever.

3 warning signs for Trump in November: Biden stronger in swing states



Now that it’s Trump v. Biden, it’s a bit easier to game out the direction of the 2020 presidential election. ...
Biden is strong in swing states. Greenberg’s polling closely follows voters in 16 battleground states, including Pennsylvania, Ohio, Michigan and Wisconsin. Trump won the battleground states by 1 percentage point against Hillary Clinton in 2016—giving him enough electoral votes to clinch the election. But Biden is ahead of Trump so far in 2020. “Biden’s winning by 4 to 5 points,” Greenberg says. “If Hillary won the popular vote by 2 nationally, that would translate to 7 for Biden.” And that’s enough for him to win.

Biden’s margin at the moment isn’t as large as the 9-point advantage Democrats had in the 2018 midterms. But that could reflect Sanders’ role in the race. Since Sanders stayed in until April 8, he could have detracted from Biden’s performance against Trump up till that point. With Sanders out, some voters have a simpler choice, which could benefit Biden. That’s not a given, but Sanders is more chummy with Biden now than he was with Clinton in 2016, which could swing more of the Sanders vote toward Biden.

Other factors:
The Republican party is shrinking. “There’s been a revolt against Trump that people just haven’t paid attention to,” Greenberg tells Yahoo Finance. “The Republican party has been shedding voters.” That’s not apparent in Gallup’s survey of party affiliation, which shows the GOP with a relatively stable 30% share of the electorate nationwide. But Greenberg and other pollsters say they’ve seen surprising shifts in battleground states during the primary elections.
In Michigan, for instance, there was a notable increase in turnout in the Democratic primaries—in some predominantly Republican areas. That suggests some moderate Republicans aren’t just turning on Trump—they’re also switching parties. “I thought moderate Republicans who have pulled away from Trump, maybe by November they’d vote for Biden,” Greenberg says. “But they’re voting in the Democratic primaries.”

And, it's the economy, stupid!
Voters judge a president on the last six months. The state of the economy will obviously be a major factor in the November elections, given a massive surge in unemployment and lost earnings for millions as they go to vote. It’s possible the economy will be recovering by then, allowing Trump to claim credit for defeating the virus and getting the country back on track. But there’s almost no chance employment or economic output will be back to pre-virus levels by then, and many voters won’t care how good the economy was before the virus arrived.

“People will say to themselves, ‘am I making gains now, and in the last six months?’” Greenberg says. “They don’t have a longer time frame on it.” That means Trump’s many boasts about “jobs, jobs jobs” and record stock market highs won’t count for much.

The article then descends into negatives for Biden, the excitability and gaffe-prone narratives. Otherwise, good article.

I'm exited and verbal flubs on my part make me sympathetic to Biden!

Go Joe, Beat Trump like a drum.

Cheerful RCP averages news for Biden

Ridin' with Biden!
Won't be needing the Sanders anymore, but the rest is good news.
For those who won't believe Joe can beat Trump these figures say he can beat the Dictopub like a drum!!

ABC/Ipsos Poll: majority of Americans now disapprove of Trump's handling of C-19 outbreak

Zachary Evans ,National Review•April 4, 2020

The bounce is over and the celebrity President is going to be tanking.


A majority of Americans now disapprove of President Trump’s handling of the Wuhan coronavirus outbreak, according to an ABC News/Ipsos poll.

52 percent of Americans disapprove of Trump’s response to the pandemic, while 47 percent approve, according to the poll, which was conducted April 1-2 and had a 4.8 point margin of error. The same poll taken on March 18-19 reported 55 percent approval of Trump’s response versus 43 percent disapproval.

Good sign. But 47% is way too much!!

American Bridge 21st Century PAC: Powerful Democratic Unity Ad For Joe Biden

Compliments of Daily Kos poster poopdogcomedy.

A great add for Joe.

Judge declines to postpone Wisconsin elections, extends absentee voting

y ZACH MONTELLARO 04/02/2020 05:25 PM EDT Updated: 04/02/2020 05:52 PM EDT

In-person voting will go forward on Tuesday in Wisconsin, but the judge extended the deadline for mail ballots to be requested and received.

A federal judge expanded absentee voting in Wisconsin in a ruling ahead of Tuesday’s coronavirus-stricken state elections, but he is not postponing the vote, saying that he did not have the authority to do so.

U.S. District Judge William Conley ordered the state to extend two key absentee ballot deadlines in an effort to mitigate a drop in voter turnout. Voters will have an extra day — until 5 p.m. Friday — to request absentee ballots, and, more significantly, Conley ordered election officials to count absentee ballots received by 4 p.m. on April 13, nearly a week after the original deadline of 8 p.m. on election night. Ballots do not have to be postmarked by any particular time.

While I am anxious for the primaries to be over, the danger of spreading the infections is of paramount importance. We can only pray that it will be conducted in such a meaner that this fear may be minimized or completely avoided. Vote by mail Wisconsin folks!
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