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Letter From An American

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  • mickeyratmickeyrat Posts: 19,288
     November 7, 2020 (Saturday)

    Today at about 11:30 am, the media called the 2020 US presidential election. The winners are the Democratic candidate, former Vice President Joseph R. Biden, Jr., and his running mate-- the first woman elected to the vice presidency-- California Senator Kamala Harris.

    It is a new day in America.

    The last four years have been a struggle for the survival of American democracy. That struggle has been no less fundamental than the Civil War or World War II, for all that our people died not from foreign artillery but in hospitals and under the knees of police officers.

    A majority of Americans spoke up this week to reclaim our fundamental values: equality before the law and equality of opportunity. This was a huge win. The Republicans did all they could to disfranchise Democratic voters, yet as of tonight, Biden and Harris are ahead by more than 5 million votes, with more votes still to be counted.

    This victory, the defense of a government “of the people, by the people, for the people,” belongs to everyone who refused to let right-wing talking points go unchallenged any longer, who called their congressional representatives, who wrote letters to their local newspapers, who filled out a ballot, who ran for office. It belongs to everyone who stood up for America as a land of freedom and possibility, rather than a land of carnage.

    It belongs to you.

    If there is anything the last four years have taught us, it’s that we are our own saviors.

    The struggle to protect our democracy is not over, not by a long shot. Already Trump’s supporters are insisting that the vote was rigged and the election stolen, and they are vowing to fight. Popular right-wing media hosts are egging them on. Meanwhile, Trump’s term does not end until January 20, 2021, and he will almost certainly use that time to take revenge on those he blames for his loss, that is: us. The next two months are going to be rocky.

    While this election saved democracy for now, the forces that gave rise to Donald Trump’s presidency have not been vanquished. America is still under siege by oligarchs who are trying to take control of the country. They win supporters by spinning a false narrative that feeds fear and fury to drive ordinary Americans apart. And, as we now know, 70 million voters are open to their narrative, even if it means children torn from their parents, half of the country demonized as anti-American, a lawless administration, a deep recession, and more than 230,000 Americans dead.

    For my part, I believe that the way to defang this cabal is by rejecting its lies and returning fact-based argument to the center of our national conversations. Going forward, I will continue to do my part to make that happen.  

    But whatever the future brings, there is no doubt that today is ours. After four years in which we have indulged the worst of our nation, we have voted to reclaim the best.

    Thank you all for this day.

    [photo by Buddy Poland]

    _____________________________________SIGNATURE________________________________________________

    Not today Sir, Probably not tomorrow.............................................. bayfront arena st. pete '94
    you're finally here and I'm a mess................................................... nationwide arena columbus '10
    memories like fingerprints are slowly raising.................................... first niagara center buffalo '13
    another man ..... moved by sleight of hand...................................... joe louis arena detroit '14
  • josevolutionjosevolution Posts: 24,240
    Thanks for posting these it really helped me everyday to know there’s people like her speaking truth to power! 
    jesus greets me looks just like me ....
  • mickeyratmickeyrat Posts: 19,288
    Thanks for posting these it really helped me everyday to know there’s people like her speaking truth to power! 

    you can sign up for a daily email through her website https://heathercoxrichardson.substack.com/people/4875576 or just follow her on facebook

    the previous days letter gets posted between 2 and 4 am.

    _____________________________________SIGNATURE________________________________________________

    Not today Sir, Probably not tomorrow.............................................. bayfront arena st. pete '94
    you're finally here and I'm a mess................................................... nationwide arena columbus '10
    memories like fingerprints are slowly raising.................................... first niagara center buffalo '13
    another man ..... moved by sleight of hand...................................... joe louis arena detroit '14
  • josevolutionjosevolution Posts: 24,240
    mickeyrat said:
    Thanks for posting these it really helped me everyday to know there’s people like her speaking truth to power! 

    you can sign up for a daily email through her website https://heathercoxrichardson.substack.com/people/4875576 or just follow her on facebook

    the previous days letter gets posted between 2 and 4 am.

    Thanks will def sign up for email I don’t do FB
    jesus greets me looks just like me ....
  • mickeyratmickeyrat Posts: 19,288
     November 8, 2020 (Sunday)

    Trump and Republican Party leaders are refusing to acknowledge that Democrat Joe Biden and his running mate Kamala Harris have won the 2020 election. Despite Biden’s win in the Electoral College and his win of 4.4 million* and counting in the popular vote, Trump insists—without evidence-- that there has been fraud and will not concede the election. So far, most Republican leaders are following his lead. This morning, for example, Senator Pat Toomey (R-PA) suggested, contrary to the facts, that there are irregularities in the ballot counting.

    Senator Mitt Romney (R-UT) and former President George W. Bush were two of the handful of Republican leaders to congratulate Biden and Harris. The rest are keeping mum, possibly recognizing what Senator Lindsey Graham said out loud on the Fox News Channel this morning: “If Republicans don't challenge and change the U.S. election system, there will never be another Republican president elected again."

    Graham is right that, in their modern incarnation, Republicans will definitely have a hard time surviving unless they change the system even more than they already have. They are in the minority in the country, and a Democratic administration will likely pass a new voting rights act to replace the one the Supreme Court gutted in 2013. More voters will indeed make it hard for the current Republican Party to regain control of the country.

    The obvious answer to the Republicans’ problem would seem to be broadening their appeal, and there are glimmers that a branch of the Republican Party is heading that direction. After the election, former chair of the Republican National Committee and adviser to the never-Trump Lincoln Project Michael Steele appeared on comedian Larry Wilmore’s new show on NBC’s Peacock streaming service.

    Steele emphasized that he was still a Republican, but he was an American first, and that the Republican Party needed to get rid of its allegiance to Trump and rebuild. He pointed out that he has been a Republican since 1976, and that most of the people currently in charge are newcomers. Steele expressed disappointment that so many voters supported Trump in the election, but was more scathing of Republican Party leaders who “sycophantically kowtow to a[n]… egomaniacal henchman who has one… view of the world and that’s himself.”

    Right-wing media outlets also continue to insist, without evidence, that the election was fraudulent. The Fox News Channel is emphasizing the many lawsuits Trump has filed without mentioning that the lawsuits have all, so far, been thrown out for lack of evidence of any kind of fraud. Once again, Trump’s people are constructing a fictional narrative through “investigations,” a theme that, after former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s emails and Hunter Biden’s Ukraine work, should sound familiar.

    Memes on right-wing media are expanding on this rumor. They call for holding a new election, promise that the Supreme Court will step in to give Trump the win, or assure Trump followers that the election will get thrown in the House of Representatives, where Republican states will hand the White House back to Trump. These attacks are taking a toll. On CBS News’s 60 Minutes today, Philadelphia City Commissioner Al Schmidt, a Republican, said the people counting ballots in the city have received death threats.

    This is not normal. The outcome of this election is not in doubt. Trump’s lawyers have launched a number of lawsuits challenging the mail-in votes that favored Biden, but judges have thrown all of them out from lack of evidence of any kind of fraud. There is no reason to think that the Supreme Court will step in, or that the election will get thrown into the House, although either is technically possible and may be what the president is hoping for.

    Sources close to the president told CNN’s Jake Tapper that Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner, his lawyer Rudy Giuliani, and his campaign adviser Jason Miller are telling Trump to hold rallies to push for a vote recount. Even aside from its implications for our democracy, this horrifies public health officials. Today we passed more than 10 million cases of coronavirus, with averages of more than 100,000 infections a day. Trump has insisted, without evidence, that we are “rounding the corner” on the virus, even as more members of the White House staff, including chief of staff Mark Meadows, have come down with it.

    Aside from the coronavirus, the attack on the outcome of the election, even in the face of a clear win, is designed to keep the Republican base seething about an election leaders are telling them was stolen. The Trump campaign is fundraising on this issue, urging followers to donate for the legal challenges ahead. But the Wall Street Journal today noted that the fine print of the “Official Election Defense Fund” explains that 60% of contributions to the fund will go toward paying off Trump’s election debt, and 40% to the operating account of the Republican National Committee. Only after a donation hits the legal limit will the remainder go toward legal expenses.  

    Meanwhile, the refusal to acknowledge Biden’s win is hamstringing his ability to get his team in place. Emily Murphy, a Trump appointee at the General Services Administration, the agency in charge of signing the paperwork that gives a new administration access to office space and equipment as well as $9.9 million authorized for a presidential transition, has refused to sign paperwork enabling Biden and his team to begin the transition process. Once the transition begins, the new administration can begin to process disclosure and conflict-of-interest forms and get up to speed with ongoing government projects. But the GSA is refusing to allow a transition before Trump agrees that one is in order. Normally the transition begins the day after the election is called.

    Trump’s people are standing almost alone in refusing to acknowledge the results of a democratic election. The rest of the world is greeting the new presidential team with joy. “London looks forward to working with you—it’s time to get back to building bridges, not walls,” tweeted London Mayor Sadiq Kahn. “Welcome back America,” tweeted Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo. In what must have been a bit of a blow for Trump, even his former personal ally Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu congratulated Biden and Harris today with a personal tweet: “Joe, we’ve had a long & warm personal relationship for nearly 40 years, and I know you as a great friend of Israel. I look forward to working with both of you to further strengthen the special alliance between the U.S. and Israel.”

    Vice President Elect Harris is a pathbreaker, the first woman elected to the vice presidency. This fact has not been lost on American women, many of whom think her election falls into the category of “high time.” Harris acknowledged this achievement in her victory speech last night, wearing a white pantsuit in honor of the suffragists, who fought for the vote, and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, who ran for the presidency in 2016. Harris is a pathbreaker in other ways, too: she is the first Indian-American and the first Black woman to be elected to the second-highest office in the land.

    Tonight, the Biden team released its schedule for tomorrow. Biden will receive a briefing from his transition coronavirus team and launch a 12-person coronavirus task force co-chaired by Dr. Vivek Murthy, Surgeon General under President Obama and President Trump, and former Food and Drug Administration commissioner Dr. David Kessler.

    Vice President Pence’s coronavirus task force has not met in weeks, but will do so tomorrow. The president has not been seen in public since the election, except going to and from his golf course twice over the weekend. He has nothing on his public schedule for Monday.

    *I had this wrong last night when I put it at 5 million.

    _____________________________________SIGNATURE________________________________________________

    Not today Sir, Probably not tomorrow.............................................. bayfront arena st. pete '94
    you're finally here and I'm a mess................................................... nationwide arena columbus '10
    memories like fingerprints are slowly raising.................................... first niagara center buffalo '13
    another man ..... moved by sleight of hand...................................... joe louis arena detroit '14
  • g under pg under p Surfing The far side of THE Sombrero GalaxyPosts: 17,845
    mickeyrat said:
    Thanks for posting these it really helped me everyday to know there’s people like her speaking truth to power! 

    you can sign up for a daily email through her website https://heathercoxrichardson.substack.com/people/4875576 or just follow her on facebook

    the previous days letter gets posted between 2 and 4 am.

    Thank you I am certainly signing up, it's great to hear a voice of reason in this tremulous year of 2020.

    Peace
    *We CAN bomb the World to pieces, but we CAN'T bomb it into PEACE*...Michael Franti

    *MUSIC IS the expression of EMOTION.....and that POLITICS IS merely the DECOY of PERCEPTION*
    .....song_Music & Politics....Michael Franti

    *The scientists of today think deeply instead of clearly. One must be sane to think clearly, but one can think deeply and be quite INSANE*....Nikola Tesla(a man who shaped our world of electricity with his futuristic inventions)


  • mickeyratmickeyrat Posts: 19,288
    November 9, 2020 (Monday)

    I had hoped that the days when the news came like a firehose were over, but so far, no luck.

    This morning, the stock market jumped 1200 points in its first day of trading after the announcement of Biden’s election. Over the course of the day it was up as much as 1600 points, then ended for the day with the Dow Jones Industrial Average up 834.57 points, or 2.95%.

    The strong market is at least in part because pharmaceutical company Pfizer and the German drug company BioNTech announced today they have a coronavirus vaccine which appears to be about 90% effective. The Trump administration immediately tried to take credit for the vaccine, only to have Pfizer note that it has not taken federal money under Trump’s Operation Warp Speed for rushing a coronavirus vaccine. Don Jr. promptly suggested that the delay in announcing the potential vaccine until this week was designed to hurt Trump’s reelection, but it seems Pfizer is likely distancing itself from Trump to avoid any suggestion that the vaccine is about politics, rather than science. In the past, the administration has touted a number of treatments for Covid-19 that have turned out to be ineffective, and the pressure for a vaccine before the election threatened to weaken public faith in one.

    The pandemic continues to worsen across the country. Today we learned that Ben Carson, the Secretary of Housing and Urban Development, has tested positive for the virus; so has David Bossie, the Trump adviser in charge of the campaign’s legal challenges to the election loss. Both men were at the election night watch party at the White House, along with White House chief of staff Mark Meadows, who was infected at the time and did not wear a mask. Aides told PBS NewsHour reporter Yamiche Alcindor that they were worried the event would be a superspreader, but felt pressured to attend.

    President-Elect Joe Biden started his presidential transition today, beginning by announcing the makeup of his coronavirus task force. It’s an impressive group of doctors and scientists, including Dr. Rick Bright, a whistleblower fired by Trump officials. “Please, I implore you, wear a mask," Biden told Americans. "A mask is not a political statement…. The goal is to get back to normal as fast as possible.”

    New leadership and the rising infection rates are shifting the conversation. Last night, Utah’s Republican Governor Gary Herbert announced a state of emergency. He has imposed a statewide mask mandate indefinitely and a ban on social gatherings outside of households for the next two weeks. He has limited extracurricular activities at schools. Businesses that don’t follow the mask mandate can be fined; organizers who ignore the social gathering rule can be prosecuted and fined up to $10,000.

    Not everyone likes the idea of new leadership, though. In an unprecedented move, Trump is refusing to acknowledge that he has lost the election. He has launched lawsuits challenging the ballot counting in a number of states, and his surrogates—including White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany—are accusing the Democrats of cheating. Tonight, Attorney General William Barr legitimized the idea of voter fraud by permitting federal prosecutors to investigate such allegations. Barr’s move prompted the head of the Election Crimes Branch of the Department of Justice, Richard Pilger, to resign.

    But what’s so weird about this is that they are losing all these lawsuits. Indeed, some of them they’re not even trying to win: they’re not bothering to fill out the correct paperwork. It seems clear that they are simply stoking the narrative of an unfair election, but it is not at all clear to me to what end.

    It is certainly possible that Trump and his people are launching a coup, as observers warn. And yet, this would not be an easy task. Biden’s win is not a few votes here or there; it is commanding, and Trump’s aides are telling reporters they think the game is played out. The military has already said it wants no part of getting involved in the election, and the courts so far are siding against the administration entirely. Even key Republican leaders, such as Georgia’s Republican lieutenant governor, are denying there has been any problem with the vote.

    Maybe what's at stake is that last Tuesday’s election left control of the Senate hanging on two runoff elections in Georgia. Today the Republican candidates in those races tagged on to the cries of voter fraud to call for Georgia’s Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger to resign. Raffensberger is the top elections official in the state. He is a Republican. There is no evidence of any irregularity in the 2020 Georgia election, and the two senators did not offer any. But if they can get Democratic votes thrown out, Senator David Purdue and Kelly Loeffler might avoid the runoffs that look like they might well result in Democratic victories.

    Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is determined to keep control of the Senate, and ginning up a conviction that the election was rigged could do that. McConnell defended Trump’s challenging of the election today, although he did not explicitly say he believed the election had been fraudulent. Trump’s attacks are working: new polling shows that 7 out of 10 Republican voters now think that the 2020 election was illegitimate. Barr met with McConnell before he signed onto the idea of voter fraud by announcing that federal prosecutors could go after it.
     
    Still, while control of the Senate is likely driving McConnell, it seems highly unlikely that Trump cares about it. Perhaps the president is simply deep in a narcissistic rage, unable to face the idea of losing.

    But there is something else niggling at me.

    Trump’s refusal to acknowledge Biden’s win means that the current administration is denying him the right to see the President’s Daily Briefing (the PDB) which explains the biggest security threats facing the country and the latest intelligence information. Trump can keep Biden from seeing other classified information, too.  

    Today, Trump fired Defense Secretary Mark Esper (by announcing the firing on Twitter), and replaced him with a loyalist, Christopher C. Miller, who will be “acting” only. Trump also selected a loyalist and Republican political operative to become the general counsel at the National Security Agency, our top spy agency, over the wishes of intelligence officials. Michael Ellis was the chief counsel to Representative Devin Nunes (R-CA), a staunch Trump loyalist. Trump is also reportedly considering firing FBI director Christopher Wray and CIA director Gina Haspel. Last week, he quietly fired the leaders of the agencies who oversee or nuclear weapons, international aid, and electricity and natural gas regulation, although that last official was moved to a different spot in the administration.

    In other words, Trump is cleaning out the few national security leaders who were not complete lackeys and replacing them with people who are. It's funny timing for such a shake-up, especially one that will destabilize the country, making us more vulnerable.

    Today Washington Post diplomacy and national security reporter John Hudson noted that a source told him that the “Trump administration just gave Congress formal notification for a massive arms transfer to the United Arab Emirates: 50 F-35s, 18 MQ-9 Reapers with munitions; a $10 billion munitions package including thousands of Mk 82 dumb bombs, guided bombs, missiles & more….” This deal comes two months after the administration’s Abraham Accord normalizing relations between Israel and the UAE opened the way for arms sales.

    The UAE has wanted the F-35 for years; it is the world’s most advanced fighter jet. They cost about $100 million apiece. The president's son-in-law, Jared Kushner, has secretly been pushing for the sale of the arms to the UAE in the face of fierce opposition by government agencies and lawmakers.

    The administration had announced a much smaller version of this deal at the end of October, in a sale that would amount to about $10 billion, but Congress worried about the weaponry falling into the hands of China or Russia and seemed unlikely to let the sale happen. In 2019, it stopped such a deal. Trump declared a national emergency in order to go around Congress and sell more than $8 billion of weapons to the UAE, Saudi Arabia and Jordan. He later fired Steven Linick, the State Department’s inspector general looking into those sales, but when the IG’s report came out nonetheless it was scathing, suggesting that they put the U.S. at risk of being prosecuted for war crimes.

    When you remember that Trump’s strong suit has always been distraction, and that he has always used the presidency as a money-making venture, I wonder if we need to factor those characteristics in when we think about his unprecedented and dangerous refusal to admit he has lost this election.

    _____________________________________SIGNATURE________________________________________________

    Not today Sir, Probably not tomorrow.............................................. bayfront arena st. pete '94
    you're finally here and I'm a mess................................................... nationwide arena columbus '10
    memories like fingerprints are slowly raising.................................... first niagara center buffalo '13
    another man ..... moved by sleight of hand...................................... joe louis arena detroit '14
  • mickeyratmickeyrat Posts: 19,288
    November 10, 2020 (Tuesday)

    A week after the election, it-- along with its insane aftermath-- has caught up with me. I've been asleep for hours, and am going to write this and go back to sleep for many, many more hours.

    There is crazy news out there, which I'll cover in the future, but it feels like it can wait. The gig is up. Trump is going to smash and grab all he can on the way out... but he IS on the way out.

    See you all tomorrow, rested and ready for the future.

    [Photo by Peter Ralston]

    _____________________________________SIGNATURE________________________________________________

    Not today Sir, Probably not tomorrow.............................................. bayfront arena st. pete '94
    you're finally here and I'm a mess................................................... nationwide arena columbus '10
    memories like fingerprints are slowly raising.................................... first niagara center buffalo '13
    another man ..... moved by sleight of hand...................................... joe louis arena detroit '14
  • mickeyratmickeyrat Posts: 19,288
    November 11, 2020 (Wednesday)

    Today President-Elect Joe Biden named his chief of staff. He has picked Ronald A. Klain, 59, a veteran Democratic operative with degrees from Georgetown and Harvard Law School, who has worked in and around Washington, D.C., since 1987, when he clerked for Supreme Court Justice Byron White. Klain was Biden’s chief of staff when he was vice president.

    Like Biden, Klain is well-known and well-liked in both parties, and is seen as competent and politically astute. He is an expert institutionalist who worked with Biden during the recession he and President Obama inherited from the previous administration. President Obama also appointed Klain to oversee the U.S. response to Ebola, giving him much-needed expertise as we face both a recession and a pandemic.  

    That’s the big story of the day. The coronavirus pandemic is out of control. Today states reported 144,000 new cases and 1,562 Americans died, the highest number of deaths since May 14. Hospitalizations are rising quickly, with more than 1600 people admitted every day. Texas has had more than 1 million infections, and has set up mobile morgues.

    In North Dakota, the hospitals are at full capacity. To alleviate staffing shortages, North Dakota Governor Doug Burgum (R) has taken the extreme step of allowing infected health care workers to continue to work, delivering care to those who are also sick. Burgum has declined to issue a mask requirement.

    Today, three more members of the White House, including the political director Brian Jack, tested positive for coronavirus. Those infected attended the White House election night watch party, suggesting that the White House has now held two superspreader events. The first was the September 26 event celebrating Trump’s nomination of Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court to take the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s seat.

    Although Biden’s margin of victory in last week's election continues to mount and Trump’s lawsuits over the results continue to fail, Trump still refuses to admit he lost the election. Such a refusal in the face of such a big loss is unprecedented, and White House sources are grousing to reporters that the administration is “a f*****g clown show.”

    Veteran Republican operative Karl Rove wrote today in the Wall Street Journal that the margin of victory is too high to be overturned, and former Secretary of Defense and Republican Senator William Cohen of Maine warned that Trump’s conduct is “more akin to a dictatorship than a democracy.” Twitter and Facebook have begun to block Trump’s lies about the election, prompting angry followers to call for switching their allegiance to platforms where they can say whatever they wish, true or not.

    Trump’s refusal to recognize Biden’s victory is likely about more than his wish not to be seen as a loser. First of all, it’s quite profitable. The Trump campaign is urging followers to donate to the legal challenges, but the fine print shows that donations will actually go to a new Trump Political Action Committee and to the Republican National Committee’s operating account. Donations won’t go toward the legal challenges until donations to the other two funds are at their legal maximum of several thousand dollars.

    Trump has quietly floated the idea of running again in 2024, but that, too, is likely tied to money. He is the only president in history to file for reelection on the day of his inauguration, and we now know that much of his campaign money went to legal bills and lavish lifestyles.

    Republican leaders are humoring Trump because they need his voters in Georgia to eke out control of the Senate. Both of Georgia’s Senate seats are headed to a runoff in early January, and Republicans need Trump supporters to turn up. “We need his voters,” Senator John Thune of South Dakota, told reporters today. “[W]e want him helping in Georgia.”
     
    Trump’s refusal to recognize the outcome of the election also gives him room to deny Biden the access to resources and information usually shared with the president-elect. He has refused to permit Biden access to the State Department, so the world leaders calling to wish him well have to reach out to the president-elect directly. Virtually all major foreign leaders have now called, except two of Trump’s autocratic allies: President Jair Bolsonaro of Brazil and President Vladimir Putin of Russia. For all the calls, both sides are providing readouts, as was the norm before Trump became president.

    Trump has also refused to let Biden see the Presidential Daily Briefing, a daily document outlining the most recent intelligence about threats to the nation, and he has refused to let his people cooperate with Biden’s in a transition, a highly unusual move. Biden says he can work around these issues. “We don’t see anything that’s slowing us down, quite frankly,” Biden said yesterday. “We’re going to do exactly what we’d be doing if he had conceded and said we’ve won, which we have. So there’s nothing really changing.” Nonetheless, the refusal to cooperate weakens the country.

    Although refusing to admit defeat, Trump is showing little sign of actually wanting to govern. He is tweeting statements that Twitter is flagging as disinformation and he is golfing. Otherwise, his public schedule is largely empty, while Biden is keeping a normal presidential schedule. Reporters are expressing relief at the calm confidence Biden is returning to Washington, D.C.

    The president has, though, begun a major purge at the Pentagon, another unusual move in the last two months of his presidency. He has replaced top civilians, including Defense Secretary Mark Esper, Esper’s chief of staff Jen Stewart, acting Under Secretary of Defense for Policy James Anderson, and Under Secretary of Defense for Intelligence and Security Joseph Kernan, with his own loyalists.

    No one is quite sure what this purge means, but people are worried. General Barry McCaffrey, a retired four-star general, told MSNBC he was “alarmed” at the shake-up.

    There are, though, some obvious reasons for the change in personnel. It might simply be a flexing of his muscles. It might be a way for him to permit loyalists to pad their resumes before they have to leave. It might be a way to try to release selective bits of intelligence about the Russia investigation to bolster his story about the contacts between his 2016 campaign and Russia—both Michael Ellis, who became general counsel of the National Security Agency, and Kashyap Patel, who replaced Stewart, are close associates of Representative Devin Nunes (R-CA) who has worked hard to discredit the Russia investigation.

    Or it could be that Trump wants to draw U.S. troops out of Afghanistan before the Pentagon says it’s safe. Military experts think that a U.S. presence is important for keeping the Taliban from regaining power there, where it could quietly back international terrorists, leaving us vulnerable to a terrorist attack during Biden’s administration. A former Trump official told Politico reporters Lara Seligman and Natasha Bertrand, “There is a lot of concern among military and former civilian Pentagon people that this shift was because [Trump] intends to take some kind of controversial military action and wanted junior political people that would greenlight it.”

    In October, Trump shocked leaders by tweeting that he would bring home the 5,000 U.S. troops remaining in Afghanistan, where we have been for 19 years, by the end of 2020. Military officials told reporters that there were no plans to quit the country immediately as we waited for guarantees that the Taliban was following the agreement hammered out in February. A senior administration official disagreed, telling reporters that, as commander in chief, Trump would determine the best approach to Afghanistan. Throughout Trump’s term, military contractor Erik Prince, the brother of Education Secretary Betsy DeVos, has tried to convince Trump to privatize our operations there, for a cost of about $5 billion a year, a fact that may or may not be relevant.

    One thing, though, is clear. Trump thrives in chaos and the centrality it brings him. He is upping the ante post-election, as he fears the nation is moving on without him.

    _____________________________________SIGNATURE________________________________________________

    Not today Sir, Probably not tomorrow.............................................. bayfront arena st. pete '94
    you're finally here and I'm a mess................................................... nationwide arena columbus '10
    memories like fingerprints are slowly raising.................................... first niagara center buffalo '13
    another man ..... moved by sleight of hand...................................... joe louis arena detroit '14
  • mickeyratmickeyrat Posts: 19,288
    November 12, 2020 (Thursday)

    Tonight, the major networks called Arizona for Joe Biden. This means Arizona has voted for a Democrat for president for the first time since 1996, when Ross Perot’s bid for the presidency siphoned off votes from Republican candidate Bob Dole and let Democratic candidate Bill Clinton clinch the state. Before that, the last time Arizona backed a Democrat was in 1948, when it went for Harry Truman.

    Since the numbers in Biden’s column now make up an insurmountable margin for Trump to overcome, the Trump campaign is now saying that the computers in certain states switched votes from him to Biden. This has been thoroughly debunked. This afternoon, the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency in the Department of Homeland Security circulated a statement by the Elections Infrastructure Government Coordinating Council, a group of federal, state, and local officials, declaring that the 2020 election was “the most secure in American history” and that “there is no evidence” of tampering with any voting systems.

    Perhaps more to the point, Trump has been telling people that he will announce a run for the 2024 presidency as soon as the vote is certified for Biden. This would keep money flowing into his pockets, as well as keeping him in the news. Sources have told Maggie Haberman at the New York Times that the president has no grand strategy other than to keep his supporters energized to follow him into whatever he does next, including, perhaps, launching a competitor to the Fox News Channel.  

    Meanwhile, the president is holed up in the White House, his public schedule empty, tweeting about how he has won an election that everyone knows he lost.

    One of the things he is ignoring is the devastating spread of coronavirus through this country. Today more than 153,000 new cases were reported, with 66,000 people hospitalized. More than 10.4 million Americans have been infected with the coronavirus, and more than 242,000 have died.

    While the White House election night watch party has turned into a superspreader event, today ensnaring former 2016 Trump campaign manager Corey Lewandowski, most infections are now caused not by large public events but by small gatherings at home: dinner parties, carpools, playdates. These indoor events create “perfect conditions for a virus that can spread among people who are crowded into a poorly ventilated space,” write the doctors and public health officials at the PolicyLab of the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. Cases are not only on the rise, but also more severe. Experts remind us that we should avoid spending more than 15 minutes within six feet of anyone outside our own household in any 24-hour period, and they beg people to stay home for the holidays this year.

    President-Elect Joe Biden has been out of the news, working. His new chief of staff, Ronald Klain, told reporters that he has been speaking privately to Republicans, although he has not talked to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell. While Republicans appear to want to keep up the public narrative that the results of the election are unclear, they are beginning to demand that Biden get access to the intelligence reports Trump is keeping from him. Shutting the president-elect out of intelligence reports hampers our national security not only with regard to foreign affairs, but also with regard to the coronavirus, leaving Biden out of the planning to roll out a vaccine, for example.

    Among the phone calls Biden has had with world leaders was one today with Pope Francis. According to the call readout, the pope offered Biden blessings and congratulations; Biden thanked the pope for promoting the common bonds of humanity and said he hoped to work together on issues that touched on their shared belief “in the dignity and equality of all humankind.” He singled out “caring for the marginalized and the poor, addressing the crisis of climate change, and welcoming and integrating immigrants and refugees into our communities"—all areas in which the pope has called on global leaders to take action, and on which the Biden administration is expected to have different policies than that of its predecessor. Biden will be America’s second Catholic president. (John F. Kennedy, elected in 1960, was the first.)

    Biden has announced policy teams to help with the transition. They are made up largely of volunteers who will review the different government agencies and make policy recommendations. The Biden-Harris team notes that the transition will prioritize “diversity of ideology and background; talent to address society’s most complex challenges; integrity and the highest ethical standards to serve the American people and not special interests; and transparency to garner trust at every stage.” The names on the transition teams are impressive ones. Stanford Law School Professor Pamela Karlan, who testified before the House Judiciary Committee during the impeachment hearings will be part of the team that reviews the Department of Justice for the transition.

    Lara Seligman at Politico reported today that Biden has been reaching out to former Pentagon officials who retired or were fired in the past four years to talk about the transition and whether or not they might want to go back into the Defense Department. The Biden team is talking to former officials because the current ones are Trump loyalists, and team members don’t think they will be particularly cooperative or, for that matter, very knowledgeable. Seligman says that Biden wants to create a bipartisan leadership team at the Defense Department. In a notable change from the past four years, Biden’s agency review team for the Pentagon is led by female defense policy experts.

    Biden tweeted just once today, after six American National Guardsmen, along with a Czech and a French team member, died in a helicopter crash in Egypt during a peacekeeping mission. One American was wounded. While the current president apparently ignored the loss, using his Twitter feed to spread false rumors about the election and to attack the Fox News Channel, Biden tweeted: “I extend my deep condolences to the loved ones of the peacekeepers, including 6 American service members, who died on Tiran Island, and wish a speedy recovery to the surviving American. I join all Americans in honoring their sacrifice, as I keep their loved ones in my prayers.”

    _____________________________________SIGNATURE________________________________________________

    Not today Sir, Probably not tomorrow.............................................. bayfront arena st. pete '94
    you're finally here and I'm a mess................................................... nationwide arena columbus '10
    memories like fingerprints are slowly raising.................................... first niagara center buffalo '13
    another man ..... moved by sleight of hand...................................... joe louis arena detroit '14
  • brianluxbrianlux Moving through All Kinds of Terrain.Posts: 32,760
    What's your take on Klain?  I don't know anything about him.  He looks kind of grumpy, but I should not judge a book by it's cover.
    “In all human affairs there are efforts, and there are results, and the strength of the effort is the measure of the result.”
    -James Allen










  • mickeyratmickeyrat Posts: 19,288
     November 13, 2020 (Friday)

    Today, we set a record for new coronavirus cases: more than 181,000 people, with 1,389 deaths. Governors in Oregon and New Mexico have issued stay at home orders and North Dakota Governor Doug Burgum (R) late today gave in and ordered a statewide mask mandate. Nevada Governor Steve Sisolak (D) has tested positive. Recently, more than 130 of the Secret Service officers around the president have either tested positive or been told to quarantine because they have had close contact with other infected people. This is impacting White House security.

    In a statement after he met with his transition Covid-19 Advisory Board today, Biden issued a statement warning that the facts are “alarming.” After pointing to the rising infections, hospitalizations, and deaths, and to the exhaustion on the part of our healthcare workers, he praised the progress toward a safe and effective vaccine but warned we are still months away from widespread vaccination.

    While Trump and his son-in-law Jared Kushner denied federal responsibility to address the pandemic, instead leaving it up to the states and private companies, Biden called for a return to the concept of a government responsible to ordinary Americans.
     
    “This crisis demands a robust and immediately federal response,” he said, “which has been woefully lacking. I am the president-elect, but I will not be president until next year. The crisis does not respect dates on the calendar, it is accelerating right now. Urgent action is needed today, now, by the current administration….” He called for more PPEs for front-line health care workers, science-based guidelines for managing the pandemic, and more testing. He also asked Americans “to step up and do their part on social distancing, hand washing, and mask wearing to protect themselves and to protect others.”

    This afternoon, Trump spoke in public for the first time since the election, speaking to the press in the White House Rose Garden about the promising new coronavirus vaccine. He said it would be available to the entire nation as soon as April, “with the exception for places like New York state,” he said, where Governor Andrew Cuomo said he would want a panel of experts to examine any vaccine Trump tried to rush out before the election. Trump left the Rose Garden without taking questions.

    As Trump continues to claim, against all evidence, that he won the election, he has refused to begin the process of transition to a Biden presidency. He will not share intelligence with Biden, or permit transition teams to begin getting Biden’s people up to speed on the current situations in their departments. The man in charge of the Trump administration’s effort to produce a coronavirus vaccine wants to brief Biden, but cannot get permission to. Yesterday, more than 150 former national security officials from both parties warned that Trump’s refusal to begin the transition is a “serious risk to national security.”

    Today, Trump’s second chief of staff (the current one, Mark Meadows, is his fourth), retired General John Kelly, called Trump’s refusal “an increasing national security and health crisis.” The downside of not briefing the new team “could be catastrophic to our people regardless of who they voted for.” This “is not about the president or about Mr. Biden,” he said. “It is about America and what is best for our people. Mr. Trump should order the transition process begin immediately. It is the right and moral thing to do.”

    Interestingly, in an interview with CNN’s Chris Cuomo, former deputy director of the FBI Andrew McCabe suggested that Trump’s refusal to share information might be about more than stubbornness. He noted that, while Trump has made motions toward releasing more information about the Russia investigation, it was incomprehensible that Trump would actually want that information released, because it contained information that “would risk casting the president in a very negative light.” Josh Marshall of TalkingPointsMemo caught the implications of McCabe’s statement, suggesting that behind Trump’s refusal to let Biden see intelligence reports was the fear that those reports might implicate members of the Trump administration in wrongdoing.

    Trump’s effort to overturn the result of the election by getting the courts to throw out ballots so far has come to nothing. A lawyer on Trump’s legal team, Sidney Powell, told Fox News Channel personality Lou Dobbs of “fraud,” and “staggering” evidence that Venezuela, Cuba, and China used Dominion voting machines to switch hundreds of thousands of votes from Trump to Biden. But, of course, no one speaking to the media is speaking under oath.

    In courtrooms, where they face professional sanctions for unfounded allegations, Trump’s lawyers are not alleging any such fraud. Indeed, they are admitting they have no proof that such a thing occurred: a lawsuit filed in Pennsylvania to stop certification of the vote says those bringing the lawsuit are in the process of compiling evidence of fraud and “intend to produce it” later.

    So far, Trump has lost every challenge he has brought. Sixteen assistant U.S. attorneys assigned to monitor cheating in the election today told Attorney General William Barr that they had found no evidence of substantial fraud. Respectable law firms are declining to represent Trump's campaign, at least in part because lawyers are not supposed to bring frivolous lawsuits. This afternoon, Trump put his lawyer Rudy Giuliani in charge of the campaign lawsuits as well as all communications about them to the public.

    And yet, Trump followers are rallying around the belief that Trump won the election and Democrats are trying to steal it. This belief is being pushed across the internet by the “Stop the Steal” campaign. That disinformation project is the work of Republican political operative Roger Stone, a self-described “dirty trickster,” whose looming imprisonment for conviction of seven felonies Trump commuted this summer. Stone’s political action committee created a “Stop the Steal” website back in 2016, raising money with the warning that the Democrats planned to steal the election that year. Several right-wing groups launched a similar project around the 2018 midterms. Now, that meme is taking off. Trump supporters are planning a rally in Washington, D.C., tomorrow.

    Polarization might be out of step with the times. In a sign of how the election marks a change in the mood of the country, the 85-year-old billionaire industrialist Charles Koch has congratulated Biden and his running mate Senator Kamala Harris on their “historic win” and told Washington Post reporters James Hohmann and Mariana Alfaro that he hopes to find “common ground and things that we can work together on for as many issues as possible.” Since the 1950s, the Koch family has poured money behind Republican and Libertarian politicians who promise to end business regulation, but now Koch says he worries about extremism and all the hate in the country. He wants everyone “to work together and help each other and move toward a society of equal rights and mutual benefit.”

    Still, Koch-funded organizations, together known under the name “Stand Together,” are planning to invest heavily in the Georgia runoff elections for Senate, hoping to keep the Republicans in office to maintain control of the Senate.

    _____________________________________SIGNATURE________________________________________________

    Not today Sir, Probably not tomorrow.............................................. bayfront arena st. pete '94
    you're finally here and I'm a mess................................................... nationwide arena columbus '10
    memories like fingerprints are slowly raising.................................... first niagara center buffalo '13
    another man ..... moved by sleight of hand...................................... joe louis arena detroit '14
  • Halifax2TheMaxHalifax2TheMax Posts: 26,108
    mickeyrat said:
     November 13, 2020 (Friday)

    Today, we set a record for new coronavirus cases: more than 181,000 people, with 1,389 deaths. Governors in Oregon and New Mexico have issued stay at home orders and North Dakota Governor Doug Burgum (R) late today gave in and ordered a statewide mask mandate. Nevada Governor Steve Sisolak (D) has tested positive. Recently, more than 130 of the Secret Service officers around the president have either tested positive or been told to quarantine because they have had close contact with other infected people. This is impacting White House security.

    In a statement after he met with his transition Covid-19 Advisory Board today, Biden issued a statement warning that the facts are “alarming.” After pointing to the rising infections, hospitalizations, and deaths, and to the exhaustion on the part of our healthcare workers, he praised the progress toward a safe and effective vaccine but warned we are still months away from widespread vaccination.

    While Trump and his son-in-law Jared Kushner denied federal responsibility to address the pandemic, instead leaving it up to the states and private companies, Biden called for a return to the concept of a government responsible to ordinary Americans.
     
    “This crisis demands a robust and immediately federal response,” he said, “which has been woefully lacking. I am the president-elect, but I will not be president until next year. The crisis does not respect dates on the calendar, it is accelerating right now. Urgent action is needed today, now, by the current administration….” He called for more PPEs for front-line health care workers, science-based guidelines for managing the pandemic, and more testing. He also asked Americans “to step up and do their part on social distancing, hand washing, and mask wearing to protect themselves and to protect others.”

    This afternoon, Trump spoke in public for the first time since the election, speaking to the press in the White House Rose Garden about the promising new coronavirus vaccine. He said it would be available to the entire nation as soon as April, “with the exception for places like New York state,” he said, where Governor Andrew Cuomo said he would want a panel of experts to examine any vaccine Trump tried to rush out before the election. Trump left the Rose Garden without taking questions.

    As Trump continues to claim, against all evidence, that he won the election, he has refused to begin the process of transition to a Biden presidency. He will not share intelligence with Biden, or permit transition teams to begin getting Biden’s people up to speed on the current situations in their departments. The man in charge of the Trump administration’s effort to produce a coronavirus vaccine wants to brief Biden, but cannot get permission to. Yesterday, more than 150 former national security officials from both parties warned that Trump’s refusal to begin the transition is a “serious risk to national security.”

    Today, Trump’s second chief of staff (the current one, Mark Meadows, is his fourth), retired General John Kelly, called Trump’s refusal “an increasing national security and health crisis.” The downside of not briefing the new team “could be catastrophic to our people regardless of who they voted for.” This “is not about the president or about Mr. Biden,” he said. “It is about America and what is best for our people. Mr. Trump should order the transition process begin immediately. It is the right and moral thing to do.”

    Interestingly, in an interview with CNN’s Chris Cuomo, former deputy director of the FBI Andrew McCabe suggested that Trump’s refusal to share information might be about more than stubbornness. He noted that, while Trump has made motions toward releasing more information about the Russia investigation, it was incomprehensible that Trump would actually want that information released, because it contained information that “would risk casting the president in a very negative light.” Josh Marshall of TalkingPointsMemo caught the implications of McCabe’s statement, suggesting that behind Trump’s refusal to let Biden see intelligence reports was the fear that those reports might implicate members of the Trump administration in wrongdoing.

    Trump’s effort to overturn the result of the election by getting the courts to throw out ballots so far has come to nothing. A lawyer on Trump’s legal team, Sidney Powell, told Fox News Channel personality Lou Dobbs of “fraud,” and “staggering” evidence that Venezuela, Cuba, and China used Dominion voting machines to switch hundreds of thousands of votes from Trump to Biden. But, of course, no one speaking to the media is speaking under oath.

    In courtrooms, where they face professional sanctions for unfounded allegations, Trump’s lawyers are not alleging any such fraud. Indeed, they are admitting they have no proof that such a thing occurred: a lawsuit filed in Pennsylvania to stop certification of the vote says those bringing the lawsuit are in the process of compiling evidence of fraud and “intend to produce it” later.

    So far, Trump has lost every challenge he has brought. Sixteen assistant U.S. attorneys assigned to monitor cheating in the election today told Attorney General William Barr that they had found no evidence of substantial fraud. Respectable law firms are declining to represent Trump's campaign, at least in part because lawyers are not supposed to bring frivolous lawsuits. This afternoon, Trump put his lawyer Rudy Giuliani in charge of the campaign lawsuits as well as all communications about them to the public.

    And yet, Trump followers are rallying around the belief that Trump won the election and Democrats are trying to steal it. This belief is being pushed across the internet by the “Stop the Steal” campaign. That disinformation project is the work of Republican political operative Roger Stone, a self-described “dirty trickster,” whose looming imprisonment for conviction of seven felonies Trump commuted this summer. Stone’s political action committee created a “Stop the Steal” website back in 2016, raising money with the warning that the Democrats planned to steal the election that year. Several right-wing groups launched a similar project around the 2018 midterms. Now, that meme is taking off. Trump supporters are planning a rally in Washington, D.C., tomorrow.

    Polarization might be out of step with the times. In a sign of how the election marks a change in the mood of the country, the 85-year-old billionaire industrialist Charles Koch has congratulated Biden and his running mate Senator Kamala Harris on their “historic win” and told Washington Post reporters James Hohmann and Mariana Alfaro that he hopes to find “common ground and things that we can work together on for as many issues as possible.” Since the 1950s, the Koch family has poured money behind Republican and Libertarian politicians who promise to end business regulation, but now Koch says he worries about extremism and all the hate in the country. He wants everyone “to work together and help each other and move toward a society of equal rights and mutual benefit.”

    Still, Koch-funded organizations, together known under the name “Stand Together,” are planning to invest heavily in the Georgia runoff elections for Senate, hoping to keep the Republicans in office to maintain control of the Senate.

    Fuck the Koch(s), one speaks from the grave, and triple fuck Rodger Dodger Stoned. Fuck the three of them.

    People seriously need to wake up to these fucks.
    09/15/1998, Mansfield, MA; 08/29/00 08/30/00, Mansfield, MA; 07/02/03, 07/03/03, Mansfield, MA; 09/28/04, 09/29/04, Boston, MA; 09/22/05, Halifax, NS; 05/24/06, 05/25/06, Boston, MA; 07/22/06, 07/23/06, Gorge, WA; 06/29/08, 06/30/08, Mansfield, MA; 08/18/08, O2 London, UK; 10/30/09, 10/31/09, Philadelphia, PA; 05/15/10, Hartford, CT; 05/17/10, Boston, MA; 05/20/10, 05/21/10, NY, NY; 06/22/10, Dublin, IRE; 06/23/10, Northern Ireland; 09/03/11, 09/04/11, Alpine Valley, WI; 09/11/11, 09/12/11, Toronto, Ont; 09/14/11, Ottawa, Ont; 09/15/11, Hamilton, Ont; 07/02/2012, Prague, Czech Republic; 07/04/2012 & 07/05/2012, Berlin, Germany; 07/07/2012, Stockholm, Sweden; 09/30/2012, Missoula, MT; 07/16/2013, London, Ont; 07/19/2013, Chicago, IL; 10/15/2013 & 10/16/2013, Worcester, MA; 10/21/2013 & 10/22/2013, Philadelphia, PA; 10/25/2013, Hartford, CT; 11/29/2013, Portland, OR; 11/30/2013, Spokane, WA; 12/04/2013, Vancouver, BC; 12/06/2013, Seattle, WA; 10/03/2014, St. Louis. MO; 10/22/2014, Denver, CO; 10/26/2015, New York, NY; 04/23/2016, New Orleans, LA; 04/28/2016 & 04/29/2016, Philadelphia, PA; 05/01/2016 & 05/02/2016, New York, NY; 05/08/2016, Ottawa, Ont.; 05/10/2016 & 05/12/2016, Toronto, Ont.; 08/05/2016 & 08/07/2016, Boston, MA; 08/20/2016 & 08/22/2016, Chicago, IL; 07/01/2018, Prague, Czech Republic; 07/03/2018, Krakow, Poland; 07/05/2018, Berlin, Germany; 09/02/2018 & 09/04/2018, Boston, MA;

    "If you're looking down on someone, it better be to extend them a hand to lift them up."

    Libtardaplorable©. And proud of it.

    Brilliantati©
  • mickeyratmickeyrat Posts: 19,288
    brianlux said:
    What's your take on Klain?  I don't know anything about him.  He looks kind of grumpy, but I should not judge a book by it's cover.
    only read one article on him but he knows what he's doing and how to work the hill. been with biden for a while.
    I posted it in the #46 thread....

    _____________________________________SIGNATURE________________________________________________

    Not today Sir, Probably not tomorrow.............................................. bayfront arena st. pete '94
    you're finally here and I'm a mess................................................... nationwide arena columbus '10
    memories like fingerprints are slowly raising.................................... first niagara center buffalo '13
    another man ..... moved by sleight of hand...................................... joe louis arena detroit '14
  • brianluxbrianlux Moving through All Kinds of Terrain.Posts: 32,760
    mickeyrat said:
    brianlux said:
    What's your take on Klain?  I don't know anything about him.  He looks kind of grumpy, but I should not judge a book by it's cover.
    only read one article on him but he knows what he's doing and how to work the hill. been with biden for a while.
    I posted it in the #46 thread....


    Got it, thanks!
    “In all human affairs there are efforts, and there are results, and the strength of the effort is the measure of the result.”
    -James Allen










  • brianluxbrianlux Moving through All Kinds of Terrain.Posts: 32,760
    mickeyrat said:
     November 13, 2020 (Friday)

    Today, we set a record for new coronavirus cases: more than 181,000 people, with 1,389 deaths. Governors in Oregon and New Mexico have issued stay at home orders and North Dakota Governor Doug Burgum (R) late today gave in and ordered a statewide mask mandate. Nevada Governor Steve Sisolak (D) has tested positive. Recently, more than 130 of the Secret Service officers around the president have either tested positive or been told to quarantine because they have had close contact with other infected people. This is impacting White House security.

    In a statement after he met with his transition Covid-19 Advisory Board today, Biden issued a statement warning that the facts are “alarming.” After pointing to the rising infections, hospitalizations, and deaths, and to the exhaustion on the part of our healthcare workers, he praised the progress toward a safe and effective vaccine but warned we are still months away from widespread vaccination.

    While Trump and his son-in-law Jared Kushner denied federal responsibility to address the pandemic, instead leaving it up to the states and private companies, Biden called for a return to the concept of a government responsible to ordinary Americans.
     
    “This crisis demands a robust and immediately federal response,” he said, “which has been woefully lacking. I am the president-elect, but I will not be president until next year. The crisis does not respect dates on the calendar, it is accelerating right now. Urgent action is needed today, now, by the current administration….” He called for more PPEs for front-line health care workers, science-based guidelines for managing the pandemic, and more testing. He also asked Americans “to step up and do their part on social distancing, hand washing, and mask wearing to protect themselves and to protect others.”

    This afternoon, Trump spoke in public for the first time since the election, speaking to the press in the White House Rose Garden about the promising new coronavirus vaccine. He said it would be available to the entire nation as soon as April, “with the exception for places like New York state,” he said, where Governor Andrew Cuomo said he would want a panel of experts to examine any vaccine Trump tried to rush out before the election. Trump left the Rose Garden without taking questions.

    As Trump continues to claim, against all evidence, that he won the election, he has refused to begin the process of transition to a Biden presidency. He will not share intelligence with Biden, or permit transition teams to begin getting Biden’s people up to speed on the current situations in their departments. The man in charge of the Trump administration’s effort to produce a coronavirus vaccine wants to brief Biden, but cannot get permission to. Yesterday, more than 150 former national security officials from both parties warned that Trump’s refusal to begin the transition is a “serious risk to national security.”

    Today, Trump’s second chief of staff (the current one, Mark Meadows, is his fourth), retired General John Kelly, called Trump’s refusal “an increasing national security and health crisis.” The downside of not briefing the new team “could be catastrophic to our people regardless of who they voted for.” This “is not about the president or about Mr. Biden,” he said. “It is about America and what is best for our people. Mr. Trump should order the transition process begin immediately. It is the right and moral thing to do.”

    Interestingly, in an interview with CNN’s Chris Cuomo, former deputy director of the FBI Andrew McCabe suggested that Trump’s refusal to share information might be about more than stubbornness. He noted that, while Trump has made motions toward releasing more information about the Russia investigation, it was incomprehensible that Trump would actually want that information released, because it contained information that “would risk casting the president in a very negative light.” Josh Marshall of TalkingPointsMemo caught the implications of McCabe’s statement, suggesting that behind Trump’s refusal to let Biden see intelligence reports was the fear that those reports might implicate members of the Trump administration in wrongdoing.

    Trump’s effort to overturn the result of the election by getting the courts to throw out ballots so far has come to nothing. A lawyer on Trump’s legal team, Sidney Powell, told Fox News Channel personality Lou Dobbs of “fraud,” and “staggering” evidence that Venezuela, Cuba, and China used Dominion voting machines to switch hundreds of thousands of votes from Trump to Biden. But, of course, no one speaking to the media is speaking under oath.

    In courtrooms, where they face professional sanctions for unfounded allegations, Trump’s lawyers are not alleging any such fraud. Indeed, they are admitting they have no proof that such a thing occurred: a lawsuit filed in Pennsylvania to stop certification of the vote says those bringing the lawsuit are in the process of compiling evidence of fraud and “intend to produce it” later.

    So far, Trump has lost every challenge he has brought. Sixteen assistant U.S. attorneys assigned to monitor cheating in the election today told Attorney General William Barr that they had found no evidence of substantial fraud. Respectable law firms are declining to represent Trump's campaign, at least in part because lawyers are not supposed to bring frivolous lawsuits. This afternoon, Trump put his lawyer Rudy Giuliani in charge of the campaign lawsuits as well as all communications about them to the public.

    And yet, Trump followers are rallying around the belief that Trump won the election and Democrats are trying to steal it. This belief is being pushed across the internet by the “Stop the Steal” campaign. That disinformation project is the work of Republican political operative Roger Stone, a self-described “dirty trickster,” whose looming imprisonment for conviction of seven felonies Trump commuted this summer. Stone’s political action committee created a “Stop the Steal” website back in 2016, raising money with the warning that the Democrats planned to steal the election that year. Several right-wing groups launched a similar project around the 2018 midterms. Now, that meme is taking off. Trump supporters are planning a rally in Washington, D.C., tomorrow.

    Polarization might be out of step with the times. In a sign of how the election marks a change in the mood of the country, the 85-year-old billionaire industrialist Charles Koch has congratulated Biden and his running mate Senator Kamala Harris on their “historic win” and told Washington Post reporters James Hohmann and Mariana Alfaro that he hopes to find “common ground and things that we can work together on for as many issues as possible.” Since the 1950s, the Koch family has poured money behind Republican and Libertarian politicians who promise to end business regulation, but now Koch says he worries about extremism and all the hate in the country. He wants everyone “to work together and help each other and move toward a society of equal rights and mutual benefit.”

    Still, Koch-funded organizations, together known under the name “Stand Together,” are planning to invest heavily in the Georgia runoff elections for Senate, hoping to keep the Republicans in office to maintain control of the Senate.

    Fuck the Koch(s), one speaks from the grave, and triple fuck Rodger Dodger Stoned. Fuck the three of them.

    People seriously need to wake up to these fucks.

    Koch congratulating Biden surely is no reason to be a Koch fan, but it does say a lot about how insane it is that Trump is still claiming victory.

    Trump is simply causing unnecessary trouble for America:

    "Today, Trump’s second chief of staff (the current one, Mark Meadows, is his fourth), retired General John Kelly, called Trump’s refusal “an increasing national security and health crisis.” The downside of not briefing the new team “could be catastrophic to our people regardless of who they voted for.” This “is not about the president or about Mr. Biden,” he said. “It is about America and what is best for our people. Mr. Trump should order the transition process begin immediately. It is the right and moral thing to do.”"

    “In all human affairs there are efforts, and there are results, and the strength of the effort is the measure of the result.”
    -James Allen










  • mickeyratmickeyrat Posts: 19,288
      November 14, 2020 (Saturday)

    Today Trump’s followers—including the neo-fascist Proud Boys and Marjorie Taylor Greene, a racist QAnon believer newly elected to the House of Representatives from Georgia-- congregated in Washington, D.C., to claim that Trump won the 2020 election. President-Elect Joe Biden’s overwhelming victory, they say, was fake, despite the many administration officials insisting that the election was “the most secure in American history.”

    Trump’s motorcade drove through the crowd on his way to play golf. Far from discouraging his followers’ distrust of our democratic system, he is actively encouraging it. His many lawsuits, which are being tossed out or decided against him, seem designed to stoke the narrative that he was cheated. His surrogates are taking to popular outlets to insist that the election was rigged and that Trump, in fact, won. He refuses to concede the election, insisting that there were “illegitimate” ballots that must be discarded, and is stalling the necessary preparations for a transition to the Biden administration.

    Former Trump official George Papadopoulos—the man who helped to launch the Russia investigation when he boasted to a foreign ambassador in 2016 that the Russians had “dirt” on Secretary of State Hillary Clinton-- tweeted, “The military is with the president,” suggesting he is looking to a military coup. (In fact, military leaders have been quite clear they swore an oath to the Constitution, and a majority of rank-and-file military personnel appear to have voted for President-Elect Biden.)

    Meanwhile, the president appears to have lost whatever interest he might have had in actually governing. As the country reels from the coronavirus surge that has now infected more than 10 million of us, killed more than 244,000, and crippled the economy, he is apparently focused exclusively on the past election. He has not gone to a coronavirus task force meeting in at least five months, rarely reads the daily reports on the virus, and is no longer briefed about the crisis by doctors. He has apparently decided simply to let the conflagration burn. At the same time, he is refusing to let his staffers talk to incoming Biden staff about the pandemic.

    “The duty of a president is to protect the national security of the United States, and this is the most prominent disease of mass destruction America’s ever faced, and we have a commander in chief who has run away from the problem and has made it worse,” Jack Chow, a U.S. health official under George W. Bush, told reporters from the Washington Post. “We had an opportunity twice over the past eight months to bring it down to safer levels, and we failed. We are on the verge of losing control of this pandemic.”

    And yet, most Republican lawmakers are not willing to challenge Trump in public.

    Indeed, in his willingness to abandon governance for his own benefit Trump is simply following the lead of Republican lawmakers like Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) who has steadfastly refused to take up bills from the Democratic-led House of Representatives, including a coronavirus relief package to address the coronavirus recession. Instead, McConnell has focused on packing the courts with pro-business judges. Excerpts from a new book by former President Barack Obama, due out next week, reveal McConnell’s response to a plea from then-Vice President Biden to pass a worthwhile bill. McConnell answered: “You must be under the mistaken impression that I care.”

    Today’s Republican Party has traveled a long way from the party of Abraham Lincoln.

    In the 1850s, the Republican Party rose to stand against a small group of wealthy southern white slaveholders who had taken over the government. Those slaveholders made up only about 1% of the American South. They ran the Democratic Party, but they knew their system of human enslavement was unpopular and that they were in a political minority even in the Democratic Party. It was only a question of time until the majority began to hem in their ownership of other human beings.

    So when folks started to urge the government to promote infrastructure in the growing nation, building roads or dredging harbors, for example, these southern leaders worried that if the government began to intervene in the economy, the regulation of slavery would be just around the corner. They pushed back by insisting that the government could do nothing that was not expressly written in the Constitution. Even if the vast majority of the people in the country wanted the government to do something, it could not.

    As pressure grew for government to promote economic growth for ordinary Americans, the southern slaveholders worked to cement their power. They courted poor white voters, telling them that any attempt to regulate slavery was an effort to lift Black people over them. From their stronghold in the Senate, southern leaders stopped legislation to develop the country and instead pushed laws that spread slavery into the West. When northerners objected, southern leaders packed the Supreme Court and got it to agree that Congress could not stop the spread of southern slavery even across the entire nation. But while they insisted the federal government could not promote the economy for ordinary Americans, they demanded a sweeping federal slave code to protect slavery in the West.

    Their system was best for the nation, they explained. Society was made up of a mass of workers, drudges who weren’t terribly smart, but were strong and loyal. They were the “mudsills” of society, akin to the wood hammered into the ground that supported the grand plantation homes above. Directed by their betters, these mudsills produced capital, which accumulated in the hands of the wealthy. There, it did far more good than if it were distributed among those who had produced it, because society’s leaders used their wealth to innovate and build the economy, doing what was best for the workers, who could not understand their own interests. The nation thrived.

    To secure this system, though, it was imperative that the mudsills could not vote. If they could, workers would demand more of the wealth they produced. White southerners had enslaved their laborers, South Carolina Senator James Henry Hammond told his northern colleagues in 1858, but northerners had not, and they foolishly allowed them to vote. “If they knew the tremendous secret, that the ballot-box is stronger than "an army with banners," and could combine, where would you be?” Hammond demanded. “Your society would be reconstructed, your government overthrown, your property divided… by the quiet process of the ballot-box.”

    Men like Abraham Lincoln organized to overturn the idea that they were mindless workers, doomed to menial labor for life. In 1859, Lincoln articulated a new vision for the nation, putting ordinary men, rather than elite slaveholders, at the heart of national development.

    Lincoln’s “Free Labor” theory held that the nation worked best when the government supported ordinary men rather than a wealthy elite. Ordinary men worked more intelligently and innovated more freely than an elite, and when the government used its power to free up resources for them, they built the economy far more efficiently than the enslaved workers who were hampered by the commands of an out-of-touch plantation owner. Rather than shunning economic development, the government should embrace it, they said, spreading free labor, rather than slavery, across the West.

    When Lincoln won the 1860 election, southern leaders refused to accept the results of the election. They left the Union to launch a new nation that rejected the idea of human equality and was instead based on human enslavement.

    Left in charge of the government, the new Republican Party rebuilt it according to Lincoln’s vision. To pay the enormous cost of the Civil War, they invented our first national system of taxation, including the income tax. Then, to enable people to pay those taxes, they spread opportunity to ordinary men, giving them western land (that we now recognize belonged to indigenous people), establishing our state universities, and building a railroad to take people across the country. Ultimately, they included Black men in their vision, abolishing slavery, establishing Black citizenship, and guaranteeing Black men the right to vote so they could protect their own interests.

    Under the leadership of the Republican Party, Americans were, Lincoln reminded them, resolving “that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.”

    _____________________________________SIGNATURE________________________________________________

    Not today Sir, Probably not tomorrow.............................................. bayfront arena st. pete '94
    you're finally here and I'm a mess................................................... nationwide arena columbus '10
    memories like fingerprints are slowly raising.................................... first niagara center buffalo '13
    another man ..... moved by sleight of hand...................................... joe louis arena detroit '14
  • Merkin BallerMerkin Baller Posts: 4,405
    I enjoy reading all of them, but today’s was particularly good. 

  • Halifax2TheMaxHalifax2TheMax Posts: 26,108
    I enjoy reading all of them, but today’s was particularly good. 
    Or depressing as fuck.
    09/15/1998, Mansfield, MA; 08/29/00 08/30/00, Mansfield, MA; 07/02/03, 07/03/03, Mansfield, MA; 09/28/04, 09/29/04, Boston, MA; 09/22/05, Halifax, NS; 05/24/06, 05/25/06, Boston, MA; 07/22/06, 07/23/06, Gorge, WA; 06/29/08, 06/30/08, Mansfield, MA; 08/18/08, O2 London, UK; 10/30/09, 10/31/09, Philadelphia, PA; 05/15/10, Hartford, CT; 05/17/10, Boston, MA; 05/20/10, 05/21/10, NY, NY; 06/22/10, Dublin, IRE; 06/23/10, Northern Ireland; 09/03/11, 09/04/11, Alpine Valley, WI; 09/11/11, 09/12/11, Toronto, Ont; 09/14/11, Ottawa, Ont; 09/15/11, Hamilton, Ont; 07/02/2012, Prague, Czech Republic; 07/04/2012 & 07/05/2012, Berlin, Germany; 07/07/2012, Stockholm, Sweden; 09/30/2012, Missoula, MT; 07/16/2013, London, Ont; 07/19/2013, Chicago, IL; 10/15/2013 & 10/16/2013, Worcester, MA; 10/21/2013 & 10/22/2013, Philadelphia, PA; 10/25/2013, Hartford, CT; 11/29/2013, Portland, OR; 11/30/2013, Spokane, WA; 12/04/2013, Vancouver, BC; 12/06/2013, Seattle, WA; 10/03/2014, St. Louis. MO; 10/22/2014, Denver, CO; 10/26/2015, New York, NY; 04/23/2016, New Orleans, LA; 04/28/2016 & 04/29/2016, Philadelphia, PA; 05/01/2016 & 05/02/2016, New York, NY; 05/08/2016, Ottawa, Ont.; 05/10/2016 & 05/12/2016, Toronto, Ont.; 08/05/2016 & 08/07/2016, Boston, MA; 08/20/2016 & 08/22/2016, Chicago, IL; 07/01/2018, Prague, Czech Republic; 07/03/2018, Krakow, Poland; 07/05/2018, Berlin, Germany; 09/02/2018 & 09/04/2018, Boston, MA;

    "If you're looking down on someone, it better be to extend them a hand to lift them up."

    Libtardaplorable©. And proud of it.

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  • mickeyratmickeyrat Posts: 19,288
    I enjoy reading all of them, but today’s was particularly good. 
    Or depressing as fuck.

    and you are welcome to simply ignore the thread.
    _____________________________________SIGNATURE________________________________________________

    Not today Sir, Probably not tomorrow.............................................. bayfront arena st. pete '94
    you're finally here and I'm a mess................................................... nationwide arena columbus '10
    memories like fingerprints are slowly raising.................................... first niagara center buffalo '13
    another man ..... moved by sleight of hand...................................... joe louis arena detroit '14
  • Halifax2TheMaxHalifax2TheMax Posts: 26,108
    mickeyrat said:
    I enjoy reading all of them, but today’s was particularly good. 
    Or depressing as fuck.

    and you are welcome to simply ignore the thread.
    Oh please.
    09/15/1998, Mansfield, MA; 08/29/00 08/30/00, Mansfield, MA; 07/02/03, 07/03/03, Mansfield, MA; 09/28/04, 09/29/04, Boston, MA; 09/22/05, Halifax, NS; 05/24/06, 05/25/06, Boston, MA; 07/22/06, 07/23/06, Gorge, WA; 06/29/08, 06/30/08, Mansfield, MA; 08/18/08, O2 London, UK; 10/30/09, 10/31/09, Philadelphia, PA; 05/15/10, Hartford, CT; 05/17/10, Boston, MA; 05/20/10, 05/21/10, NY, NY; 06/22/10, Dublin, IRE; 06/23/10, Northern Ireland; 09/03/11, 09/04/11, Alpine Valley, WI; 09/11/11, 09/12/11, Toronto, Ont; 09/14/11, Ottawa, Ont; 09/15/11, Hamilton, Ont; 07/02/2012, Prague, Czech Republic; 07/04/2012 & 07/05/2012, Berlin, Germany; 07/07/2012, Stockholm, Sweden; 09/30/2012, Missoula, MT; 07/16/2013, London, Ont; 07/19/2013, Chicago, IL; 10/15/2013 & 10/16/2013, Worcester, MA; 10/21/2013 & 10/22/2013, Philadelphia, PA; 10/25/2013, Hartford, CT; 11/29/2013, Portland, OR; 11/30/2013, Spokane, WA; 12/04/2013, Vancouver, BC; 12/06/2013, Seattle, WA; 10/03/2014, St. Louis. MO; 10/22/2014, Denver, CO; 10/26/2015, New York, NY; 04/23/2016, New Orleans, LA; 04/28/2016 & 04/29/2016, Philadelphia, PA; 05/01/2016 & 05/02/2016, New York, NY; 05/08/2016, Ottawa, Ont.; 05/10/2016 & 05/12/2016, Toronto, Ont.; 08/05/2016 & 08/07/2016, Boston, MA; 08/20/2016 & 08/22/2016, Chicago, IL; 07/01/2018, Prague, Czech Republic; 07/03/2018, Krakow, Poland; 07/05/2018, Berlin, Germany; 09/02/2018 & 09/04/2018, Boston, MA;

    "If you're looking down on someone, it better be to extend them a hand to lift them up."

    Libtardaplorable©. And proud of it.

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  • mickeyratmickeyrat Posts: 19,288
    no please do....
    _____________________________________SIGNATURE________________________________________________

    Not today Sir, Probably not tomorrow.............................................. bayfront arena st. pete '94
    you're finally here and I'm a mess................................................... nationwide arena columbus '10
    memories like fingerprints are slowly raising.................................... first niagara center buffalo '13
    another man ..... moved by sleight of hand...................................... joe louis arena detroit '14
  • Halifax2TheMaxHalifax2TheMax Posts: 26,108
    A morning full of “assholes” and “fuck off” comments. For crying out loud, if you’re going to post, expect responses you may not agree with. Why go personal and be all bent out of shape? And before you take it personally, you as in the General you, not you personally.

    Regarding the content of this morning’s post, I found the history of the opposition to slavery and the response to it by the pro slave south and the parallel to today’s repub party and leadership depressing. But thanks for making it about me. There’s an ignore feature, use it.
    09/15/1998, Mansfield, MA; 08/29/00 08/30/00, Mansfield, MA; 07/02/03, 07/03/03, Mansfield, MA; 09/28/04, 09/29/04, Boston, MA; 09/22/05, Halifax, NS; 05/24/06, 05/25/06, Boston, MA; 07/22/06, 07/23/06, Gorge, WA; 06/29/08, 06/30/08, Mansfield, MA; 08/18/08, O2 London, UK; 10/30/09, 10/31/09, Philadelphia, PA; 05/15/10, Hartford, CT; 05/17/10, Boston, MA; 05/20/10, 05/21/10, NY, NY; 06/22/10, Dublin, IRE; 06/23/10, Northern Ireland; 09/03/11, 09/04/11, Alpine Valley, WI; 09/11/11, 09/12/11, Toronto, Ont; 09/14/11, Ottawa, Ont; 09/15/11, Hamilton, Ont; 07/02/2012, Prague, Czech Republic; 07/04/2012 & 07/05/2012, Berlin, Germany; 07/07/2012, Stockholm, Sweden; 09/30/2012, Missoula, MT; 07/16/2013, London, Ont; 07/19/2013, Chicago, IL; 10/15/2013 & 10/16/2013, Worcester, MA; 10/21/2013 & 10/22/2013, Philadelphia, PA; 10/25/2013, Hartford, CT; 11/29/2013, Portland, OR; 11/30/2013, Spokane, WA; 12/04/2013, Vancouver, BC; 12/06/2013, Seattle, WA; 10/03/2014, St. Louis. MO; 10/22/2014, Denver, CO; 10/26/2015, New York, NY; 04/23/2016, New Orleans, LA; 04/28/2016 & 04/29/2016, Philadelphia, PA; 05/01/2016 & 05/02/2016, New York, NY; 05/08/2016, Ottawa, Ont.; 05/10/2016 & 05/12/2016, Toronto, Ont.; 08/05/2016 & 08/07/2016, Boston, MA; 08/20/2016 & 08/22/2016, Chicago, IL; 07/01/2018, Prague, Czech Republic; 07/03/2018, Krakow, Poland; 07/05/2018, Berlin, Germany; 09/02/2018 & 09/04/2018, Boston, MA;

    "If you're looking down on someone, it better be to extend them a hand to lift them up."

    Libtardaplorable©. And proud of it.

    Brilliantati©
  • mickeyratmickeyrat Posts: 19,288
    facts of our history neither expressly taught nor I expect as such, widely known.

    ours is not to lament the past, but to acknowledge it in all its ugly truth and change the present and therefore the future. You know, to form that more perfect union.

    after having heard on audiobook the unabridged A Peoples History of The United States I am frankly disgusted  with that history, the complete failure to own that history and with it the opportunity to do better.
    _____________________________________SIGNATURE________________________________________________

    Not today Sir, Probably not tomorrow.............................................. bayfront arena st. pete '94
    you're finally here and I'm a mess................................................... nationwide arena columbus '10
    memories like fingerprints are slowly raising.................................... first niagara center buffalo '13
    another man ..... moved by sleight of hand...................................... joe louis arena detroit '14
  • dignindignin Posts: 8,754
    I have been enjoying this thread, thanks for taking the time to post these mickey. It's nice to see the daily letter with the well written rundown of the days events.
  • dignin said:
    I have been enjoying this thread, thanks for taking the time to post these mickey. It's nice to see the daily letter with the well written rundown of the days events.
    Yes, thank you mickey. I enjoy these letters.

  • brianluxbrianlux Moving through All Kinds of Terrain.Posts: 32,760
    I usually stay up late and read Heather Cox Richardson's post.  And when I happen to fall asleep early, it's always here waiting to be read.  Bravo!
    “In all human affairs there are efforts, and there are results, and the strength of the effort is the measure of the result.”
    -James Allen










  • mickeyratmickeyrat Posts: 19,288

    _____________________________________SIGNATURE________________________________________________

    Not today Sir, Probably not tomorrow.............................................. bayfront arena st. pete '94
    you're finally here and I'm a mess................................................... nationwide arena columbus '10
    memories like fingerprints are slowly raising.................................... first niagara center buffalo '13
    another man ..... moved by sleight of hand...................................... joe louis arena detroit '14
  • jeffbrjeffbr SeattlePosts: 7,177
    brianlux said:
    I usually stay up late and read Heather Cox Richardson's post.  And when I happen to fall asleep early, it's always here waiting to be read.  Bravo!
    Me, too. It is typically either the last thing I read before bed, or the first thing I read in the morning. 

    "I'll use the magic word - let's just shut the fuck up, please." EV, 04/13/08
  • mickeyratmickeyrat Posts: 19,288
     November 16, 2020 (Monday)

    President-Elect Joe Biden is now 5.6 million votes ahead of Trump in the popular vote, with 50.9% of the vote to Trump’s 47.3%. And yet, Trump continues to maintain he won the election.

    This afternoon Vice President-Elect Kamala Harris and President-Elect Joe Biden held a press conference outlining their economic strategy. They had just come from a strategy meeting with business leaders and union officials, and Biden seemed quite optimistic that the different groups had found common ground. In a notable change from his predecessor, Biden was transparent about who was at the meeting, identifying the attendees by name and position.

    The plans Biden and Harris outlined essentially boiled down to what they had said on the campaign trail: they will bring jobs back to America by limiting federal contracts to companies in the country, support a $15 minimum wage, and support unions. Biden also reiterated that it is imperative for Congress to pass the Heroes Act, the $3 trillion coronavirus relief act the House of Representatives passed last May but which Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) refuses to take up. (“Heroes” stands for Health and Economic Recovery Omnibus Emergency Solutions Act.)

    Biden reminded listeners that the states are in a crisis through no fault of their own, and they cannot fix it on their own, either. By law, virtually no state and local governments can operate with a deficit, while the federal government can. States have seen their revenues evaporate during the pandemic at the same time their citizens need robust unemployment and social-welfare programs, and so they need support through this temporary emergency. Last spring, McConnell rejected the idea of federal aid to states, and suggested that state and local governments should declare bankruptcy, something Republican leaders have advocated for a decade.

    In a piece in The Atlantic last April, former speechwriter for President George W. Bush David Frum explained that state bankruptcies would not end state debt; they would permit a federal judge to restructure that debt. The federal judiciary has shifted rightward in the last ten years, so bankruptcy would allow a federal judge to impose Republican priorities on Democratic states like New York, states Republicans have little hope of controlling through elections. In such proceedings, the first things to go would be pensions and social welfare programs, while judges would protect bondholders, many of them wealthy people who pour money into the political action committees of Republican politicians.

    So, refusing to pass a coronavirus bill offers an opportunity for Republicans to impose their will on Democratic-led states. Even in a best-case scenario, without federal help, states like New York must cut services or raise taxes to balance their budget, angering constituents in either case. But the process of driving states to that point means that Americans will lose their homes or their apartments, and be unable to afford food. And that is coming to pass. Today CBS News posted a video of thousands of cars lined up in Dallas, Texas, to collect boxes of food.

    Once again, Biden urged all Americans to work together. “The refusal of Democrats and Republicans to cooperate with one another is not due to some mysterious force beyond our control,” he reminded listeners. “It’s a conscious decision. It’s a choice that we make.”

    Trump’s appointee at the head of the General Services Administration, Emily Murphy, still refuses to acknowledge that Biden has been elected. Since she is the one who has the power to decide when election results are clear enough to begin a transition, allowing Biden’s people to have access to staff at federal agencies and internal government information, Biden remains hampered in his ability to get his administration organized and ready to take over.

    This bureaucratic limbo for a president-elect is unprecedented, but when asked about it today, Biden pointed out that Harris, who is still a senator, sits on the Senate Intelligence Committee, so the team is not entirely without information.

    He did warn, though, that it is imperative that his people be able to coordinate with Trump’s plan to distribute a coronavirus vaccine. Biden is not alone in this observation; public health experts and even members of Trump’s own administration are demanding that Trump permit contact across the two camps.

    There was more good news about the vaccine today as Moderna announced that its vaccine appears to be 94.5% effective and lasts for a month when refrigerated at normal temperatures. (Pfizer’s vaccine needs to be stored in extreme cold, which will make it hard to transport.)

    It means that it is likely that in January, when Biden takes over, the process of getting the vaccine to America’s more than 300 million people will be underway, and Biden noted that if the two administrations could not begin coordinating now, people would likely die. “If we have to wait until January 20 to start that planning, it puts us behind over a month, month and a half. And so it’s important that it be done, that there be coordination now,” he said.

    Biden also called out the president for his inaction in the face of a pandemic that has now infected more than 11 million Americans and killed almost 250,000 of us. “The idea the president is still playing golf and not doing anything about it is beyond my comprehension,” Biden said. “What is he doing?”

    Indeed, Trump has no public events scheduled tomorrow, as he has not for days now, but he has not been entirely inactive.

    According to the New York Times, last Wednesday, international inspectors from the International Atomic Energy Agency reported that Iran’s uranium stockpile is now 12 times bigger than it would have been permitted to be under the Iran nuclear deal that Trump dumped in 2018. Last Thursday, Trump asked his advisers whether he could do something about Iran’s main nuclear site, but appears to have been talked out of military action as they warned a military strike could escalate into a bigger conflict.

    Trump has, though, given the order to the Pentagon to begin to withdraw troops from Afghanistan and Iraq, bringing the number down to 2500 each by January 15, five days before Trump is set to leave office. Defense Secretary Mark Esper objected to this drawdown; Trump fired him a week ago and began to stock political positions in the Defense Department with loyalists.

    Esper told the White House in a classified memo that the military chain of command, including himself, US Central Command leader Marine General Kenneth "Frank" McKenzie, and commander of NATO's mission in Afghanistan General Austin Miller, all objected to the drawdown because the conditions for withdrawal established in the US-Taliban agreement signed in February have not been met. Their concerns are that the removal of US troops will permit Taliban fighters to take control of the country, permitting terrorists to use it as a base.

    Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General Mark Milley also objected to the withdrawal, and today, so did Republican lawmakers. McConnell said: “A rapid withdrawal of U.S. forces from Afghanistan now would hurt our allies and delight the people who wish us harm.” Marco Rubio (R-FL) chair of the Senate Intelligence Committee, said, “The concern would be it would turn into a Saigon-type of situation where it would fall very quickly and then our ability to conduct operations against terrorist elements in the region could be compromised.”

    Still, dominating the news tonight was another election story. Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger, a Republican, said in an interview that Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC), the chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee, asked Raffensperger if he could throw out all the ballots from counties that had a high percentage of non-matching signatures. This would mean throwing out legally cast mail-in ballots, an illegal request that Raffensperger said stunned him. Graham called Raffensperger’s characterization of the conversation “ridiculous.”

    And yet, the same day that Graham approached Raffensperger, Trump tweeted about the issue of signatures in Georgia, saying “Georgia Secretary of State, a so-called Republican (RINO), won’t let the people checking the ballots see the signatures for fraud. Why? Without this the whole process is very unfair and close to meaningless. Everyone knows that we won the state.”

    _____________________________________SIGNATURE________________________________________________

    Not today Sir, Probably not tomorrow.............................................. bayfront arena st. pete '94
    you're finally here and I'm a mess................................................... nationwide arena columbus '10
    memories like fingerprints are slowly raising.................................... first niagara center buffalo '13
    another man ..... moved by sleight of hand...................................... joe louis arena detroit '14
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