37 thoughts on “News/Politics 1-26-17

  1. On the reliability (?) of Snopes: https://www.forbes.com/sites/kalevleetaru/2016/12/22/the-daily-mail-snopes-story-and-fact-checking-the-fact-checkers/#25243983227f

    I haven’t trusted them much since the day two or three years ago when my husband found an “expert witness” citing a news article (not on Snopes) and said he didn’t say what he is alleged to have said, that in fact he said it was outside his expertise and as a non-American it wasn’t an issue in which he wanted to get involved. My husband then went to Snopes and saw they were using the discredited information, and he contacted them to point them to the interview in which the source said he had been misquoted. He never heard back from Snopes, and a couple weeks later he looked at their cite and they were still prominently featuring the false quote; he contacted Snopes again, and again was ignored. After that, we had no choice but to take Snopes with a cupful of salt.

    Liked by 3 people

  2. One of my more liberal friends posted this. In the spirit of knowing what the other side is up to I shared it to my facebook page and signed up. I got my first call this morning with an urgent plea to contact my senator and block Jeff Sessions appointment.
    I am sharing it with you. You are free to do with it as you like.



    The majority of our country believes in decency, in moderation, in sanity. Let’s not let the powers that be forget it. If we all band together against extremism and spend a few minutes a day using tools that have been proven to work, we can make a big difference in defending those values we share as Americans.

    Phoning our legislators, as New York Times recently reported*, is an extremely effective way to make our voices heard. That’s where the Daily Action alerts come in. We follow the news cycles closely to determine where we can collectively make the greatest impact. The point of Daily Action alerts is to make civic engagement easy and logistically painless.


    All you have to do is text the word DAILY to the number 228466 (A-C-T-I-O-N). You’ll be prompted to enter your ZIP code and that’s it—you’re signed up. You will subsequently receive one text message every workday about an issue that we have determined to be urgent based on where you live. You tap on the phone number in your message, listen to a short recording about that day’s issue, and from there you’ll be automatically routed to your Senator, member of Congress, or other relevant elected official. In 90 seconds, you can conscientiously object and be done with it.

    You can make the phone calls when you’re walking to the bus stop, or waiting in line for your morning latte. One touch of the phone and you’re done.

    *NY Times, “Heres Why You Should Call Not Email Your Legislators”


  3. Well. One certainly does not want to put forth any effort or have anything like that infringe in our personal space. Can’t they just get a computer to do that ninety second thing?


  4. Evidence That America’s Voter Registration System Needs an Upgrade:


    “1) Approximately 24 million—one of
    every eight—voter registrations in the
    United States are no longer valid or
    are significantly inaccurate.

    2) More than 1.8 million deceased
    individuals are listed as voters.

    3) Approximately 2.75 million people
    have registrations in more than one


  5. Again,

    Head. Desk.

    And again, it’ not illegal unless you vote in both, but the optics are horrendous after Trump’s remarks yesterday.


    “Just one day after President Donald Trump said he would ask for a “major investigation” into his unsubstantiated allegations of voter fraud, White House counselor Kellyanne Conway pushed back on proof that shows the president’s youngest daughter on voter registration rolls in two states.

    Tiffany Trump is currently registered in both New York City and Philadelphia, according to state election records in New York and Pennsylvania. Trump was a student at the University of Pennsylvania until her graduation last May.

    Conway disputed the findings during an interview Thursday on TODAY.

    “I talked last night to Tiffany Trump, and she said it is flatly false that she is registered in two states,” she said.

    Conway recalled how Tiffany described trying to register earlier in the year in New York “so she could vote for her father” in the primary.

    “She had been registered in Pennsylvania and went through the process, said it was very byzantine, and took a long time, but she said she is not registered in two states,” she said.”

    This may also simply be a case of showing how terrible a job Philly and PA do of keeping voter rolls updated. That wouldn’t surprise me at all.


  6. According to Bloomberg Trump will have difficulty building The Wall in Texas. Half the workforce that does this type of work are illegal aliens. Yet another reason why it’s time to get serious about border control.

    And sad too. All these jobs lost to workers here illegally and willing to work for substandard wages. It’s also time to start punishing employers who do this. It’s time for E-verify to be the law of the land, and heavy fines for employers who knowingly continue to violate the law.


    “President Donald Trump’s proposed border wall faces many obstacles. One of the tallest: building it without undocumented workers.

    A labor shortage has left few hands to build houses and factories in the region, where wages have already been rising and projects delayed. Now, the president’s plan for “immediate construction of a border wall” will force the government to find legal builders for a project that could employ thousands if not tens of thousands. About half of construction workers in Texas are undocumented, and nationwide 14 percent lack authorization for employment in the U.S., according to the Workers Defense Project, an Austin group that advocates for undocumented laborers.

    “If he is going to build a wall with legal workers in Texas, he is going to have a very hard time,” said Stan Marek, chief executive officer of Marek Brothers, a Houston commercial builder. “There is a real shortage of legal labor.””

    Funny, the builder quoted fails to mention that his fellow builders hold a lot of the responsibility for this. When you pay sub-standard wages because there’s a huge pool of low cost, illegal labor, of course there’ll be a shortage of legal, higher paid workers. They’ve already left for areas where it’s better, since they have a higher overhead with a family, taxes, homes, and what not, and can’t afford to live there anymore.

    What a mess.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. The guy who could have been president, if he’d only been in the race, has released his ObamaCare replacement plan.


    “Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) unveiled an ObamaCare replacement bill Wednesday as part of his effort to urge the GOP to speed up work on an alternative to the healthcare law.

    Paul has been pushing his colleagues to have a replacement plan ready to pass simultaneously with repeal of ObamaCare, a demand that has recently been gaining support inside the party. His office noted that President Trump and Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) have also reacted favorably to that idea.

    “There is no excuse for waiting to craft an alternative until after we repeal Obamacare, and the Obamacare Replacement Act charts a new path forward that will insure the most people possible at the lowest price,” Paul said in a statement.

    Paul’s plan comes the same week that two other Republican senators, Bill Cassidy of Louisiana and Susan Collins of Maine, introduced a different ObamaCare replacement, also with the hope of spurring their party to move forward on an alternative in addition to repealing the Affordable Care Act. That plan was more centrist, keeping ObamaCare’s taxes and letting states choose to keep the existing healthcare law if they wanted.

    Paul’s plan includes a tax credit of up to $5,000 per person to use as part of a Health Savings Account to pay for medical care. That tax credit appears to be larger than those offered in other Republican healthcare plans.”


  8. Trump’s plan to build The Wall just got a big boost.


    ” Speaker of the House Paul Ryan and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell will authorize $12 billion to $15 billion for a wall spanning the entire U.S.-Mexico border as soon as Sept. 30, the Republican leaders said Thursday.

    They would not say whether they would offset the costs of the wall — which President Trump repeatedly vowed would be paid for by Mexico — with budget cuts elsewhere or taxes. The comments came midway through the Republicans’ annual retreat, this year called “Congress of Tomorrow,” during which lawmakers are plotting the first 200 days of action on such issues as repealing and replacing Obamacare and reforming the tax code.

    After Ryan was asked several times if he planned to offset the billions for the wall, the speaker said he would “wait and see” what the Trump administration proposed.

    “I’m not going to get ahead of a policy and bill that has not been written yet,” Ryan told reporters.”


  9. There is not a big pool of low cost workers. We have a Mexican shortage right now. Contractors will tell you that it is not a matter of cost. It is a matter of dependability. Mexicans are dependable. They show up and work. Immigrants from the North may call in sick or from jail or may loaf or fake injuries or disability.

    As an example, when the Mexican girl that fixes my breakfast at Grandy’s went on her honeymoon, they brought in two tattooed white girls who together couldn’t do her work.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. So the non-Mexican men in Texas are all lazy freeloaders, scamming the govt.?

    But not the lawyers though, right? 🙂

    Or is it just those damn Yankee transplants who came to Texas just to collect disability, because that’s not paid anywhere else?

    Some days I can’t tell if you’re serious, or a writer for The Onion.

    And contractors who hire illegals will make any excuse, but they never mention the fact that it makes their bottom line bigger if labor costs are less. I wonder why that is?

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Just the Yankees. Working hard for a little while down here tends to “disable” them.

    Labor costs for Mexicans aren’t less per worker. Each of the tattooed white girls were making the same hourly wage as the one Mexican girl. The Mexicans cost less because each one does more.


  12. Ricky,

    “Labor costs for Mexicans aren’t less per worker.”

    If you want me to take you seriously, you need to stop with this line of BS. Workers paid under the table not only work for less, but the employer gets out of paying payroll taxes, benefits, Social Security, disability insurance, and unemployment insurance.

    Which saves them probably at least 50% when compared to the cost of a legal, tax paying worker. And it’s also why I don’t believe when a contractor says they don’t do it to save money. They’re lying, and breaking the law. There word means little, and I certainly wouldn’t want them doing work for me. I prefer legitimate companies who do the right thing, follow the law, and yes, I’ll even pay more for it. But apparently they don’t have such concerns in Texas.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Wrong again, AJ. Employers (and the illegal immigrants) pay Social Security taxes, income tax withholding and even your precious unemployment tax (immigrants use phony SS#s). They pay in to the ponzi scheme, but they don’t get benefits. There have been a number of studies on this. That is why the SS system isn’t completely bankrupt despite the best attempts of Americans to defraud it.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. I have two close friends who worked as construction superintendents for major US home builders for decades.

    Both started in Texas. Here, if they got to the jobsite after dawn on Monday morning, all of the Mexican tradesmen were hard at work.

    Both were transferred to states with few, if any, Mexicans. They had to hire non-Mexicans. Every Monday morning they never knew which tradesman would be in jail, which ones would be at home in bed, and which ones would would be drunk on the jobsite. Both got back to Texas as quick as they could.

    That is how Charles Murray’s Coming Apart looks up close to employers. Trumpkins can call it “BS”, but that is the reality employers face.


  15. One of the ways that Indian immigrants economically outperform Trumpkins is they buy and operate gas stations/convenience stores in towns that aren’t big enough for the big chains. I went into a small, but very neat one today to get milk. Four Mexican workers were in there buying lunch. The Indian lady who owns and operates it speaks good, but accented, English. She also spoke Spanish well enough to have a lengthy conversation with the four men who were obviously regular customers of hers. It was impressive.

    If our Mexicans could teach half of our Trumpkins and Democrats how to work and our Indians could teach the other half how to save and run a business, America really would be great again.


  16. You sound miserable, Ricky. From your comments, I think you would probably be much happier in India or Mexico—you know, the lands of hard-working thrifty people who obviously know how to make their country great. We would miss you of course, but we’ll be busy making our own country livable again for ALL Americans. Write when you get a chance–bon voyage. ;–)


  17. The president has signed orders regarding sanctuary cities, but in some cases this issue is not as clear-cut as it seems. Cities are being required to indefinitely house illegal immigrants at their own expense. This raises constitutional issues (because of the lack of due process) and it raises serious budgetary issues for the city in question. Any permanent solution is going to to require an increase in funding for ICE, and a commitment to speedy processing—preferably before an immigration judge.

    Gimenez cited an executive order signed Wednesday by President Donald Trump that threatened to cut federal grants for any counties or cities that don’t cooperate fully with Immigration and Customs Enforcement. Since 2013, Miami-Dade has refused to indefinitely detain inmates who are in the country illegally and wanted by ICE — not based on principle, but because the federal government doesn’t fully reimburse the county for the expense….



  18. Indians, Thais, Filipinos and some Mexicans save until they can afford to buy a business. Democrats and Trumpkins save until they can afford to buy another tattoo.


  19. The dilemma facing the media




    The dripping disdain for Trump and his supporters that started last year and has only intensified with each passing day is not going to make people trust the media more, and it’s not going to make Trump any less powerful. It’s going to make the media even less trusted, and it’s going to drive even more Trump voters toward sources of news over which the traditional media have zero control or influence. That’s not a good outcome. Not for Trump, not for voters, and not for the media.

    This country desperately needs a source of information that is deemed credible by people across the political spectrum. It needs a free press that is capable of and willing to hold everyone in power accountable, regardless of their party or their ideology and regardless of their personal feelings toward whomever happens to be in charge. We need a press that believes in the rule of law rather than rule by men. And we need a media establishment that cares more about getting facts right than about anything else.

    Judging by the type of coverage we’ve seen since the election, that institution does not currently exist in this country. What exists instead is a multitude of news ghettos whose residents pick and choose which alt-reality they want to believe. Oh, you want to believe eleventy bajillion people attended Trump’s inauguration in Washington, D.C.? Well, here you go! And you want to believe the Russians literally hacked voting machines to deny Hillary her rightful place in the Oval Office? Fantastic! Here are some fake facts for you to post on Facebook and Twitter. Or maybe you’re a longtime member in good standing of the mainstream news media who desperately wants to believe that fake news is everybody else’s problem and that your industry’s rock-bottom credibility numbers are totally not your fault? Or maybe even that the lack of trust and credibility is a mirage? Perfect: here’s a meticulously curated Twitter feed of like-minded J-school alumni who can whisper sweet nothings in your ear about how vital and trusted and fierce you are.

    I have a simple request: stop it. Just stop it. Take a deep breath. Maybe sit out a few rounds. Go scream in a pillow or take a walk, because you need a break and some freaking perspective. …

    Liked by 4 people

  20. DJ, No need to despair. On the lighter side, I’ve gotten into the habit of checking Twitter before I visit any mainstream network sources in the mornings. This was my first peek at the day’s news. It’s never boring. :–)

    Donald J. Trump Verified account

    Ungrateful TRAITOR Chelsea Manning, who should never have been released from prison, is now calling President Obama a weak leader. Terrible!


  21. Debra, I live in one of those nice bubbles that Murray talks about. It’s already great. Eventually, the Asians and the Mexicans will be a majority here. As my wife says, they marry people of the opposite gender and they don’t kill their babies.


  22. That’s ok Ricky, I don’t begrudge anyone their lawfully obtained bubble. But any bubble that depends on NAFTA or other lopsided agreements, is in for a rapid deflation. Hope you have a root cellar in there. ;–)

    Liked by 1 person

  23. Debra, As the study I posted earlier this week showed, those in the bubbles will see very little change in their purchasing power if NAFTA is repealed. On the other hand the purchasing power of Democrats and Trumpkins will be drastically cut. People may have to choose between tattoos and beer.


  24. This is the position of many cities that are virtual ‘sanctuary’ cities because of the negligence of the federal government, and its refusal to do its duty of securing the borders and providing for the common defense of the country. And it really underscores the need for the lawful duties of the government to be funded and carried out.

    The mayor of Miami-Dade county on Thursday ordered county jails to comply with federal detention requests, citing President Donald Trump’s executive orders concerning “sanctuary jurisdictions” for illegal immigrants.

    But in doing so, Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos Gimenez tells POLITICO that the Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency needs to start cooperating with the county and paying for the detention of illegal immigrants in one of the nation’s largest counties of foreign-born residents.

    “If ICE asks us to detain someone we arrested –not for immigration issues because we’re not immigration officers– we feel ICE should pay the bill and bear the responsibility for housing their inmate,” Gimenez said.



  25. Ricky @ 9:10
    Trump will benefit legal labor more in a week, than those two did with 12 years in office. It’s ironic that over 35 years have passed, and people are still making the exact same feeble argument. If those men truly believed what they were saying, they would have fixed the problem. They knew their business constituents would profit from illegal labor, and so they did not make it a priority. Shame on them.

    Liked by 1 person

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