Open thread Feb. 1, 2021 Dan Crawford | February 2, 2021 8:46 am Tags: open thread Comments (28) | Digg Facebook Twitter |
I think I would let Representative (if she is such) Marjorie Taylor Greene keep on chirping away with her silliness as she is keeping McConnell and McCarthy busy with her antics. Why get Republicans constituents angry at Democrats when they can just as well be angry at the Mc – brothers Connell and Carthy. This is what Democrats need is in-fighting by Repyblicans.
Trump ‘Singularly Responsible’ for Riot, Impeachment Managers Say
The nine House Democrats presented their case against
former President Trump in a filing, warning that acquitting
him could do grave damage to the nation.
Mr. Trump has a noon deadline to outline his defense.
Trump had his greatest loss of support in 2020 with white voters, particularly white men
NY Times – February 2
Former President Donald J. Trump lost ground with every age group in the 2020 election compared to his performance in 2016, but he had his “greatest erosion with white voters, particularly white men,” according to an analysis by one of his campaign pollsters.
The 27-page report, by the Trump pollster Tony Fabrizio, focused on what he called ten key target states. Five of them — Arizona, Georgia, Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin — all flipped to President Biden after supporting Mr. Trump in 2016. Another five — Florida, Iowa, North Carolina, Ohio, and Texas — were held by Mr. Trump in both 2020 and 2016. …
Trump ‘singularly responsible’ for the Capitol riot
The riot at the Capitol on Jan. 6 was the direct result of a campaign by former President Donald J. Trump to undermine American democracy and overthrow the election at any cost, the House impeachment managers will argue in his Senate trial. They warn that acquitting him and failing to disqualify him from future office could do grave damage to the nation.
In a meticulously detailed 80-page pretrial brief filed with the Senate on Tuesday, the nine House Democrats preparing to prosecute the case next week argued that Mr. Trump was “singularly responsible” for a violent attack on the democratic process, and would do anything to “reassert his grip on power” if he were allowed to seek election again.
“That outcome is not only supported by the facts and the law; it is also the right thing to do,” wrote the managers, led by Representative Jamie Raskin of Maryland. “President Trump has demonstrated beyond doubt that he will resort to any method to maintain or reassert his grip on power. A president who violently attacks the democratic process has no right to participate in it.” …
One of my pet peeves with “The True Left” is their fondness for the circular firing squad. Good is the enemy of perfect for example. Hearing it today just like in 2009. Facts don’t seem to matter to them. Dems gave up the public option for no reason. Dems reduced the size and shape of the ARRA for no reason. Goes on and on. Dems embraced austerity. Post links to Rep filibusters and the blow it off.
But there is one that really gets to me. banksters were left to go free from criminal actions because of their donors. It is infuriating.
They never had a chance, nor the ability. Bill Black was one of my heroes for his work on the S&L Fraud.
” William Black: Sure. The savings and loan debacle was one-seventieth the size of the current crisis, both in terms of losses and the amount of fraud. In that crisis, the savings and loan regulators made over 30,000 criminal referrals, and this produced over 1,000 felony convictions in cases designated as “major” by the Department of Justice. But even that understates the degree of prioritization, because we, the regulators, worked very closely with the FBI and the Justice Department to create a list of the top 100 — the 100 worst fraud schemes. They involved roughly 300 savings and loans and 600 individuals, and virtually all of those people were prosecuted. We had a 90 percent conviction rate, which is the greatest success against elite white-collar crime (in terms of prosecution) in history.
In the current crisis, that same agency, the Office of Thrift Supervision, which was supposed to regulate, among others, Countrywide,Washington Mutual and IndyMac — which collectively made hundreds of
thousands of fraudulent mortgage loans — made zero criminal referrals. The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, which is supposed to regulate the largest national banks, made zero criminal referrals. The
Federal Reserve appears to have made zero criminal referrals; it made three about discrimination. And the FDIC was smart enough to refuse to answer the question, but nobody thinks they made any material number of criminal referrals [either].
And what people don’t understand about the criminal justice system is there are roughly a million people employed in it — and of course, millions incarcerated in it. But of the million employees, 2,300 do elite white-collar investigations. And of those 2,300, you have to contrast that to the number of industries in the United States, which is over 1,300. Notice I didn’t say ‘corporations,’ I said ‘industries.’
So a couple of things should be obvious. First, the FBI agents will not have expertise in the industry. And second, they can’t patrol the beat. They have to wait until a criminal referral comes in, and won’t come from the bank itself. Banks don’t make criminal referrals against their CEOs.
Interesting that Black’s investigative team took 1000 FBI field agents, trained them, and sent them after the people in those criminal complains. In the financial crisis there were no criminal complaints filed by any regulators; it was 70 times as large as the S&L Fraud; and multiple times more complicated.
Not a chance there will ever be 70,000 FBI field agents.
Trump’s lawyers deny he incited the Capitol riot…
Former President Donald J. Trump’s lawyers denied on Tuesday that he incited the deadly assault on the Capitol and argued that the Senate had no power to try a former president, as House prosecutors made their case that Mr. Trump was “singularly responsible” for the Jan. 6 rampage and must be convicted and barred from holding any future office.
The dueling filings provided the clearest preview yet of a politically fraught impeachment trial — the second in just a year — scheduled to begin in earnest next Tuesday. Both sides indicated they were ready for a debate over the constitutionality of trying a former president. They were also lining up diametrically opposed interpretations of a set of events witnessed on live television across the nation.
In his first formal answer to the “incitement of insurrection” charge against him, Mr. Trump’s lawyers denied that he was responsible for the Capitol riot or that he intended to interfere with Congress’s formalizing of President Biden’s election win. They said his words to supporters, some who later stormed the building — “if you don’t fight like hell, you’re not going to have a country anymore” — were protected by his First Amendment right of free speech. They said they were not meant as a reference to violent action, but “about the need to fight for election security in general.”
Former President Donald J. Trump’s legal team submitted a brief on Tuesday to the Senate outlining his defense against the impeachment charge of “incitement of insurrection.”
“It is denied that President Trump incited the crowd to engage in destructive behavior,” the lawyers, Bruce L. Castor Jr. and David Schoen, wrote in the 14-page filing.
Notably, the document avoided repeating or attempting to defend Mr. Trump’s bogus claims that the November election had been “stolen” from him by widespread fraud, which the former president had wanted to be the central feature of his defense. But his lawyers in effect argued that Mr. Trump believed he won, and therefore was within his rights to “express his belief that the election results were suspect.” His claims could not be disproved, they added, because there was “insufficient evidence.” (Judges rejected more than 60 lawsuits by Mr. Trump and his allies claiming varying degrees of fraud or irregularities.)
Above all, the former president’s lawyers said the Constitution did not permit the Senate to try a former president after he had left office — despite the fact that the Senate has tried a former official in the past. …
Proper reference link for Michael:
September 17, 2013
Hundreds of Wall Street Execs Went to Prison During the Last Fraud-Fueled Bank Crisis
By Joshua Holland
Such a thin majority…
Joe Manchin Deals Blow to Democrats’ Stimulus Plan
Newsweek – February 2
Democratic Senator Joe Manchin said Tuesday he is opposed to passing an economic relief bill without bipartisan agreement.
Asked by reporters if he would support a budget resolution to pass the legislation, Manchin said, “I will only support moving in a bipartisan way.” He added, “That means an open process. I’ve been very clear about that.”
Manchin also released a statement on his stance, where he said, “I will vote to move forward with the budget process because we must address the urgency of the COVID-19 crisis. But let me be clear—and these are words I shared with President Biden—our focus must be targeted on the COVID-19 crisis and Americans who have been most impacted by this pandemic.” …
Gee . . .
I watched Manchin. My lie detector pegged out. He is an evil person. No doubt.
But I wonder if there is not enough room in the relief (it’s not a stimulus) package to “cooperate” with the R’s: at least to leave them less room to complain about non-bipartisanship. i don’t think people who are still working…and making 100k…need relief. indeed, i think they should be helping pay for those who can’t find work. Then if the R’s complain abou the deficit, we should offer to rescind the Trump tax cuts..in a bi-partisan way.
But unless that’s what it takes to get it passed very very soon, i’d tell the people that the R’s have become a criminal conspiracy and the only way to save the country is to ignore them. Be glad to be bi-partisan when “conservatives” find a way to be honest.
coberly, coberly co . . .
Where do I begin.
McManchin is a sh*t for sure.
Did Repubs cooperate in the last 4 years? Several hundred House bills still sit on McConnell’s desk. This is why McManchin acting like a sh*t now is particularly irritating. He said nothing or little over the last 4 years and now he wants to be in control.
“i don’t think people who are still working…and making 100k…need relief. indeed.”
Is that for one person, a couple, or a family of 4 or more? If you use Dean Baker’s Family Budget, you would find a $100,000 annually provides a modest standard of living in Metro – Chicago. If you come to Ann Arbor Metro area or Washtenaw County, you would find similar for a modest standard of living. The whole argument put forth by Repubs is meant to give them an excuse. Seventy-five percent of the household taxpayers make $100,000 or less in the US or 130 million households. At $100,000 to $200,000 annual salary, you have another 28 million Households.
If you wish to pick on something Coberly, 70% of the trump tax break went to 13 million households making greater than $200,000 annually with 2 million households getting the bulk of that 70%. The $75,000 and the $150,000 is a pretty good rule of thumb for a phase out. You could start the phase out earlier than $75,000 and $150,000 and you would still capture the bulk of the taxpayers as shown in my numbers.
To make a general statement like you did is too general.
we can’t stop Marjorie anyway. But we can’t “just let her run”. without vocal and fierce complaints about her, her crimes would be swept under the Republican rug and either no one would hear about them, or they would become the new truth: as we have seen, seventy five million american voters will believe anything they hear. our only hope is to try to get them to hear us.
as for “can the senate try an ex-president: of course it can, but it need not be an “impeachment”. it could be a simple criminal “trial”. i know that is the business of the courts..if a punishment is to be inflicted. but if joe mccarthy could try people for being communists…we can try them for being fascists.
Dems should allow the Repubs to hang themselves. Let the newspapers hang them out to dry. Dems are not good at doing this stuff. Now Repubs want AOC on the hook.
NYT, Nicholas Fandos, In Rare Public Statement, Congressional Aides Call for Trump’s Conviction
“More than 370 Democratic congressional aides will issue an unusual public appeal on Wednesday, imploring senators — in some cases their own bosses — to convict former President Donald J. Trump for inciting a violent “attack on our workplace” that threatened the peaceful transition of power. “
No comment by Repub Congressional Aides, just Democrats were afraid of harm?
If Repubs were so secure in the Capitol chambers, then why did they retreat with Democrats to more secure locations? They could have stayed put and welcomed the rioters. Perhaps the rioters would not have harmed Republicans if the legislators identified themselves as Repubs.
Why Arizona’s Senators May Collide With Democrats Who Elected Them
NY Times – February 2
Senators Kyrsten Sinema and Mark Kelly ran on bipartisan
approaches to governing, but some Democrats in Arizona
view their openness to Senate Republicans with skepticism.
Democrats control the U.S. Senate by a single vote. President Biden has placed bipartisanship near the top of his agenda. Republican senators are pushing for deals, including on Covid-19 during a meeting on Monday with the president. On the economy, on immigration, on health care — the Biden administration will need votes from every senator it can get.
Which is where Kyrsten Sinema and Mark Kelly come in.
Arizona’s two Democratic senators, both moderates, have assumed unusual stature amid all the talk about bipartisanship. Ms. Sinema made waves and frustrated progressives last month when she aligned with Republicans to maintain the filibuster, which empowers the minority party. Mr. Kelly was part of a bipartisan group of 16 senators who recently met with White House officials to discuss Covid relief. The pair represent a state that Mr. Biden narrowly flipped in November; pleasing Arizona is a new Democratic priority.
But if Ms. Sinema and Mr. Kelly are emerging as players in Washington, the politics back home are more complicated. Arizona Democratic Party officials and activists threw themselves into the two senators’ races, despite the fact that many of these Democrats are more progressive than either Ms. Sinema or Mr. Kelly. Now they are eager for their senators not just to embrace the middle, but also to adopt the policies the left is pressing for as well. Many view the senators’ openness to Republicans with skepticism. …
Trump’s presence has allowed this atrocity to go almost unnoticed. We should boycott every company that does business with China. They are run by an evil cabal. This is genocide, piled on by rape.
“What China Is Doing to Its Uighur Population Isn’t Getting Nearly Enough Attention
The details are indescribably bad, and they should enrage Americans and embarrass any company doing business with this regime.
The story that isn’t going to get anywhere near enough attention in the foreseeable future became quite clear on Tuesday night. The BBC went live with a horrific account of what China is doing to rid itself of its Uighur population.
‘ Tursunay Ziawudun spent nine months inside China’s vast and secretive system of internment camps in the Xinjiang region. According to independent estimates, more than a million men and women have been detained in the sprawling network of camps, which China says exist for the “re-education” of the Uighurs and other minorities. Human rights groups say the Chinese government has gradually stripped away the religious and other freedoms of the Uighurs, culminating in an oppressive system of mass surveillance, detention, indoctrination, and even forced sterilisation.’
The policy flows from China’s President, Xi Jinping, who visited Xinjiang in 2014 in the wake of a terror attack by Uighur separatists. Shortly after, according to documents leaked to the New York Times, he directed local officials to respond with “absolutely no mercy”. The US government said last month that China’s actions since amounted to a genocide. China says reports of mass detention and forced sterilisation are “lies and absurd allegations”.’
The details are indescribably bad, but the BBC does a fairly good job describing them, and they should enrage Americans and embarrass any company doing business with the regime that is conducting the worst genocidal campaign since the end of the horrors in what used to be Yugoslavia.
‘Internal documents from the Kunes county justice system from 2017 and 2018, provided to the BBC by Adrian Zenz, a leading expert on China’s policies in Xinjiang, detail planning and spending for “transformation through education” of “key groups” – a common euphemism in China for the indoctrination of the Uighurs. In one Kunes document, the “education” process is described as “washing brains, cleansing hearts, strengthening righteousness and eliminating evil”. The BBC also interviewed a Kazakh woman from Xinjiang who was detained for 18 months in the camp system, who said she was forced to strip Uighur women naked and handcuff them, before leaving them alone with Chinese men. Afterwards, she cleaned the rooms, she said.
“My job was to remove their clothes above the waist and handcuff them so they cannot move,” said Gulzira Auelkhan, crossing her wrists behind her head to demonstrate. “Then I would leave the women in the room and a man would enter – some Chinese man from outside or policeman. I sat silently next to the door, and when the man left the room I took the woman for a shower.” The Chinese men “would pay money to have their pick of the prettiest young inmates”, she said. Some former detainees of the camps have described being forced to assist guards or face punishment. Auelkhan said she was powerless to resist or intervene. Asked if there was a system of organised rape, she said: “Yes, rape.”
“They forced me to go into that room,” she said. “They forced me to take off those women’s clothes and to restrain their hands and leave the room.”
don’t take me for an enemy. i was not generalizing. where i live 100k is out of reach middle class. i don’t know new york or chicago. but i do take the attitude that in a war everyone contributes what he can. if it takes a little money from those who have a little more than they need so that those who have nothing can eat and keep a roof over their head, i think they should volunteer to do that. my standards of “need” may differ from yours.
I do NOT think Biden should “compromise” with them or wait for them. I suggested they cut the Trump tax cut as a “bipartisan” measure for the “emergency”, and I suggested those still working buy an insurance policy in case they find themselves among the not working tomorrow.
don’t tax me, tax the other guy is a recipe for political failure and self deception.
as for the current R’s and the Powers that feed them, my anger is greater than yours, so i have to force myself to be “moderate” [means someting different to me than it does to them] lest i be lost in sin.
Admirable as it is that you can force yourself to be “moderate”, sometimes you have to say what the fuck.
seems to me the Dems should stop worrying about Marjorie and worry about discipining their own members. They ought to be able to do that as well as the R’s.
i have no love for Marjorie..but she does more damage to the R’s than she does to us. while three democrats voting against us is fatal.
“moderate” means something different to me than it does to them.
read the details of what i said.
As Will Rogers said long ago,
(during FDR’s first term.)
‘I am not a member of any organized
political party. I am a Democrat.’
Also, ‘You’ve got to be optimist to be a Democrat,
and you’ve got to be a humorist to stay one.’
The Dems are truly a Big Tent party, and there is
rarely any ‘disciplining’ of its elected members.
coberly: “where i live 100k is out of reach middle class.”
When I moved back to town the SS cap was $62K. Today it is $143K. I think the number for “middle class” has changed a lot more in the last 25 years than you allow. I doubt that anyone buying a house north of Walnut thinks $100K is out of reach.
At the same time, median household income in the county is $59K and I could easily get by on less than $30K in expenses (including mortgage), so anyone making more than $100K where we live does not need help.
i think you got around to agreeing with me… almost.
anyone making more than median wage does not need help when there are so many with nothing.
i live south of walnut. i can get by on less than 3ok too. a lot less if my grown children had secure income. my mortgage is paid, but the county and city taxes would put me on the street if i was making much less. so i can understand why people are angry about taxes. but as long as that anger is uninformed (and the taxing agencies are clueless… i believe i paid for paving walnut so those living north of it wouldn’t have to put up with the slap slap slap of the concrete pavement) their anger is dangerous.
point i am trying to make her is that we all…almost all…couldlive comfortably and happily on less money..will have to soon anyway …but i understand why no one wants to. it would take more community spirit than exists in america today to persuade me to accept it. but that being the case, we might begin to understand what those who have more than we do think of tax-the-rich.
i am all for tax the rich. but if i turn around and say “but don’t tax me” i am a hypocrite … and they are unlikely to be moved by my community spirit.
Democrats Press Ahead on Stimulus as Biden Signals Openness to Changes
NY Times – February 3
WASHINGTON — Congressional Democrats and the Biden administration barreled ahead on Wednesday with a $1.9 trillion economic rescue package, even as they signaled a limited willingness to scale back direct payments for Americans in hopes of attracting Republican support.
Voting mostly along party lines, the House adopted a budget blueprint that included President Biden’s sweeping pandemic aid plan, laying the groundwork for Democrats to push it through, if necessary, on a simple majority vote, without Republican support. On the heels of the Senate’s party-line approval of the outline on Tuesday, the action was the latest evidence that Democrats were unified around what the administration has described as a “go-big” approach — and wary of repeating the mistakes of the 2009 stimulus bill, which Democrats delayed and slimmed down in a largely fruitless attempt to bring a large group of Republicans on board.
In private meetings with House and Senate Democrats at the White House and via conference call, Mr. Biden said he was open to negotiating some aspects of the package in the hope that Republicans could be persuaded to back it but had no intention of slashing a plan aimed at addressing the devastating toll of the pandemic.
“We need to act fast,” Mr. Biden told House Democrats on a private conference call, according to two people who attended. “It’s about who the hell we are as a country.” …
Top House Republican Condemns Marjorie Taylor Greene’s Comments, but Stands by Her
In a statement, Representative Kevin McCarthy of California said he “unequivocally” condemned the Georgia freshman’s violent and conspiracy-laden remarks, but declined to revoke her committee posts.
Feb. 3, 2021
WASHINGTON — The top House Republican refused on Wednesday to punish Representative Marjorie Taylor Greene for spreading false and bigoted conspiracy theories and endorsing political violence against Democrats, condemning the Georgia freshman’s previous comments but declining to take away her posts on influential congressional committees.
After days of public silence and private agonizing over what to do about Ms. Greene — who has endorsed the executions of top Democrats, suggested that school shootings were staged and said that a space laser controlled by Jewish financiers started a wildfire — the minority leader, Representative Kevin McCarthy of California, issued a tortured statement that harshly denounced her past statements but then argued that she should face no consequences for them.
“Past comments from and endorsed by Marjorie Taylor Greene on school shootings, political violence, and anti-Semitic conspiracy theories do not represent the values or beliefs of the House Republican Conference,” Mr. McCarthy said. …
coberly: “i think you got around to agreeing with me… almost.”
I mostly agree with you most of the time. That may be why I am inclined to nitpick when I see details where I think you are only “almost” right in how you say things.
it matters more to me than you might think to have you agree with me.
feel free to nitpick. science advances one nitpick at a time.
(a story i like to tell is about the time i was a crew chief on a bridge project. i outlined a plan for the day’s project to my crew. the least of those said to me, “that’s stupid.” i said, “oh? how would you do it?” he told me how he would do it, and I said, “you are right”. and let him be crew chief for the day.)
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(take out a link: Kevin McCarthy of California, issued a tortured statement that harshly denounced her past statements but then argued that she should face no consequences for them. …
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