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Gender: Do not display
Hometown: New England, The South, Midwest
Home country: USA
Current location: Chicago
Member since: Sat Mar 5, 2011, 12:32 PM
Number of posts: 17,425

About Me

Human. Being.

Journal Archives

What Awaits A New Democratic President

"Democrats are bracing for the possibility that if President Donald Trump loses the 2020 election, he and his aides will bungle a smooth handover of power — and maybe even try to outright sabotage the transition.

"At least one outside group that works with the 2020 Democratic campaigns has quietly launched a transition-related effort designed to offer an early look at the landscape that awaits them if they oust Trump.

"And one leading Democratic presidential candidate, Elizabeth Warren, just days ago unveiled a plan that, among other things, describes how she would move quickly to staff the government if she wins the White House.

"In the plan, Warren voices the fears of many Democrats. “This will be no ordinary transition between administrations,” she states. “Unlike previous transitions, we will not be able to assume good faith cooperation on the part of the outgoing administration.”

"Every transition is tricky given the thousands of positions that need to be filled and the array of policy priorities a new team wants to pursue.

"But several Democrats attached to different 2020 campaigns mentioned very specific concerns about what a Trump departure could mean. All spoke on condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the issue, and because no campaign wants to be seen as assuming that Trump will lose.

"The Democrats said they worry that Trump’s political appointees won’t meet with the incoming team, that there will be little, if any, paperwork left behind to guide them, and that what documents are shared will not be trustworthy.

"Some fear that Trump aides will destroy paper trails related to controversial issues, not to mention quietly push through last-minute initiatives that could constrict the next administration’s ability to tackle hot button issues such as immigration or relations with Iran.

"Some Democrats fear they will have to devote precious time in the early weeks of a new administration piecing together what happened under Trump on a range of areas.

"And that’s all if Trump accepts the election results and agrees to leave.

“This could be the most hostile, least professional transition in American history,” a former senior official in the Barack Obama administration said. “And the new administration will have to spend the early period — when it should be hitting the ground running — unearthing buried bodies.”

"One center-left organization, National Security Action, is already coordinating more than a dozen working groups focusing on specific areas — such as climate change, China, and defense policy — with the goal of producing transition-related information for the eventual Democratic nominee.
"The organization, which is led by former top officials in the Obama administration, declined to give many details about the initiative. ...

... what the nominee can hope to get from the working groups is a layout of what awaits them: for instance, compilations of various regulations rolled back under Trump; paths to recommitting to international pacts that Trump has abandoned; and what options — executive order? legislation? nothing? — a new president has to overturn other Trump moves.

"The initiative is called “FP21” — as in “foreign policy in 2021.” Each working group is led by a “true expert,” a representative of National Security Action said. The idea is to be “nominee-agnostic" — offering something useful to whoever winds up challenging Trump during the general election......"


Stand Up and "Do The Wrong Thing" -- Exposing, Not Normalizing, 45 in All His Ugly Lawlessness

Democrats can do a lot worse than exposing Trump's dirt in 2020.

We have First Amendment rights to stigmatize, then neutralize this mafia racketeer in a suit.
Bring out all his secret, NDA Ugly.

A taste of Trump's own medicine is not at all unthinkable for the SOTU.

Remember This Day

51 enablers of tyranny.
51 dead souls.
51 ghosts of American history.

Remember this day.

WE are America.
WE are not dead.
We are The People.
We are not leaving.
WE are the American Underground.

On Tyranny -- Twenty Lessons from the Twentieth Century

(by Timothy Snyder, 2017, pocket- sized, double spaced, 126 pp)

History does not repeat. But it does instruct. History can familiarize and it can warn...

We might be tempted to think that our democratic heritage automatically protects us from such threats. This is a misguided reflex.

In fact, the precedent set by the the Founders demands that we examine history to understand the deep sources of tyranny, and to consider the proper responses to it.

Americans today are no wiser than the Europeans who saw democracy yeidl to fascism, Nazism, or communism in the twentieth century.

Our one advantage is that we might learn from their experience. Now is a good time to do so.

This book presents twenty lessons from the twentieth century, adapted to the circumstances of today.

Chapter Titles:

1. Do not obey in advance.
2. Defend institutions.
3. Beware the one-party state.
4. Take responsibility for the face of the world.
5. Remember professional ethics.

6. Be wary of paramilitaries.
7. Be reflective if you must be armed.
8. Stand out.
9. Be kind to our language.
10.Believe in truth.

11. Investigate.
12. Make eye contact and small talk.
13. Practice corporeal politics.
14. Establish a private life.
15. Contribute to good causes.

16. Learn from peers in other countries.
17. Listen for dangerous words.
18. Be calm when the unthinkable arrives.
19. Be a patriot.
20. Be as courageous as you can.

In the future we might literally be the Democratic Underground.

May The Road Rise With You

Anger is an energy. Millennials love the hell out of this.

Cory Booker's Answer To The Normalization of Lawlessness -- Do Not Lose Your Outrage

Let me tell you right now.
And again this goes to the heart of our country.
Never stop being a prisoner of hope.
Our whole country speaks to that.

They crushed, they beat us at Bunker Hill.
They bombed us in a church in Birmingham.
They beat us down at Stonewall.
We've seen horribly painful moments where the very ideals of this nation were under threat that we found ways to gather back together and come back even stronger.

This election is about so much more now than a choice between a Democratic and a Republican president.
This is not about Right or Left.
This is about Right or Wrong.
This is a moral moment.

And the moral vandal that's in the White House right now?
He may win this day.
But he will not win our Nation.
We are America.
And we're going to find a way to regroup, heal, and be the moral nation that we are.

Thank you, Senator Booker. We WILL keep saying this over and over.

We are The American People.

From Pew Research -- Nine months before Election Day, three dozen House members heading for the exit

As of Jan. 28, 28 representatives (22 Republicans and six Democrats) have announced that they’re retiring and won’t seek reelection this year; four other Republicans and three Democrats are running for other offices instead. In addition, the seat of Duncan D. Hunter, R-Calif., who resigned earlier this month, won’t be filled by special election before November’s general election. That makes for 36 open seats that we know about so far.


Good, seemingly fair methodology here. We need to pay attention, and put party money on training candidates toward these seats.

According to our analysis, the 2018 election cycle saw the second-highest number of voluntary departures from the House (that is, members retiring, resigning or pursuing some other office) since the early 1990s, with 58 representatives (39 Republicans and 19 Democrats) not running for reelection. Of those 58, 31 retired outright, 21 left to run for some other office, and six resigned without being replaced in a special election.

We have to do the Obama thing -- run the numbers on the ground. "On the ground" means laying out the voter profile, existing and potential.


The Good News

From Gallup and Slashdot, posted on Facebook:

Visiting the library remains the most common cultural activity Americans engage in, by far.

The average 10.5 trips to the library U.S. adults report taking in 2019 exceeds their participation in eight other common leisure activities.

Americans attend live music or theatrical events and visit national or historic parks roughly four times a year on average and visit museums and gambling casinos 2.5 times annually. Trips to amusement or theme parks (1.5) and zoos (.9) are the least common activities among this list.



In the House That Kobe Bryant Built -- Alicia Keys and Boyz II Men

The most powerful thing in the world to bring us all together -- music.

The most healing thing in the world. Music.

In this constitutional crisis, if you feel dread like I do, this book can help.

I highly recommend historian Jill Lepore's This America -- The Case For the Nation (2019), because it can guide our thought and action into THE FUTURE.

It's short, 140 pages of double-spaced lines, pocket-sized.

When it comes to how we look ahead, its power and clarity flashes a love and understanding for this country that can mean the difference between (en)lightening and the (en)lightening bug.

There are times when reading IS doing.
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