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June 12, 2017

Comments

My favorite people are drive-by concern trolls. Magnifique.

sapient, when I opened the page here and saw you had four comments in a row, well....

And pro bono, while relatively new, is not a drive by troll.

why would PR want to join a country as fundamentally insane as the US ?

I suspect pro bono wasn't addressing sapient. This is a strange thread.

why would PR want to join a country as fundamentally insane as the US?

They're already a part, the question is why they would want to be a state. Money. I believe statehood would put them on a firmer legal footing when they begin defaulting on their debt. The state would be poor enough that it would get a much better federal match on its Medicaid expenditures. Workers would be eligible for the EITC. The State of Puerto Rico would be eligible for many other federal funding streams that the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico is not. One of the arguments conservatives put forward for why Congress should not grant statehood even if were formally requested comes down to "Do you know how many billion dollars more Puerto Rico would net?" Estimates from a few years ago put the figure at about $20B annually.

There's also the opportunity to have representation in Congress. And so have some input into the laws which govern them.

They're already a part, the question is why they would want to be a state.

no, my question is why would they want to be a part.

This is a strange thread.

Probably because it wasn't actually intended as an Open Thread, but we haven't had another one in a while....

Re PR finances:

The bankruptcy code does not have a provision for States to go bankrupt; PR *used to* have such a provision, until it was removed in the past decade or so.

So it's not clear that PR (or KS, for that matter) gets out of its financial hole via bankruptcy.

Independence? Yeah, then they can tell their creditors to go f themselves and wind up as Venezuela del Norte.

(not a lawyer, above is from 2nd hand accounts, YMMV, if shenanigans persist for more than 2 hours consult your doctor, do not taunt happy fun ball)

Well, it's strange in that sense, too. But I was thinking more of the comments since the DC shooting.

The Count writes some over-the-top stuff, but it doesn't really upset the apple cart much. It's kind of slapstick/cartoon-violent. McManus, on the other hand, really gets the juices flowing.

I write this with a feeling of detachment, if you can't tell.

I need time to go back to my day to day commenting after someone opens fire on a Congressional baseball practice.

All other details aside it brings into relief, like Gifford's shooting did, the senselessness of a violent resolution to our disagreements. No one thing can be solved by shooting a few Congressmen. Nothing good can come from proposing that a lot of Congressmen dying would be a positive thing.

The next step is shooting your neighbors, and we saw how well that worked in Baghdad.

There is no shortcut to the answers we need as a country down a violent path. For either side. Those that would paint themselves as the more peaceful alternative in a violent confrontation are self deluded.

If you believe the other side needs to be replaced in power, or kept from power, do the work. Propose a positive view of why your side should be in power. Point out the challenges in the other sides positions. Do the work. Create a vision. Win the hearts and minds.

Don't turn a setback into resentment and hatred, redouble your efforts, and recognize that almost every American wants the same things, for themselves and their neighbors.

Show how your way can achieve that. Anything else is just perpetuating the struggle for power that mostly takes up Washington's attention, from both sides.

Or it promises a path to destruction.

What Marty said

McManus, on the other hand, really gets the juices flowing.

The count doesn't tell me I'm a dilettante engaged in a self-delusional game of playing at political concern and engagement.

McManus sort of does.

I'm good with everything Marty said, except I don't think we're all on the same page as far as what we want for ourselves and our fellow-countrymen and women.

But yeah, shooting at each other is not going to get us anyplace we want to be.

I'd say we are all on the same page for 90%-95% of what we want. We just spend more time going on about the 5% where we differ. Not to mention the means of getting what we all want, where we have more differences.

i cannot image what anyone who would have looked at Trump and said "oh yeah, he'd be a good President!" wants - aside from the obvious. after all, those people spent the last eternity telling me that people like Trump are the worst kind of people. but now, he's the best.

no, i don't know what they want. i know what they don't want. but clearly that can change overnight.

and, i mostly agree with Marty. but, it feels a bit like yesterday's first mass shooting is supposed to even the score. but the math doesn't work. and then i search my brain for examples of Democrats nudging their constituents to seek SECOND AMENDMENT SOLUTIONS to political differences and i end up thinking ... it's gonna take more than that.

I think everyone wants us all to be happy and healthy, and wants all of our kids to be well-adjusted and as successful as they want to be. Everyone wants all of us to not live in material need.

Yes, we're all on that same page.

Saying we only disagree about the means of making that all happen minimizes, IMO, real differences in people's values - in what they think is fair, and important in life, and in what they believe our obligations to each other are, as fellow-members of a common society and polity.

Those are not insignificant issues. You can't really minimize them by saying "we all want the same things, we just have different ideas about how to get them". The different ideas about how to get them are, themselves, consequential.

I've been having these same conversations with people of all political stripes for years and years and years.

What I take away is that we don't all want the same things.

I'd put it like this: In what ways do people want to restrict what other people do, and why?

The things I tend to think of as differing on ends rather than means are same-sex marriage, abortion, in some cases recreational drug use, and such. I guess my beefs on goals rather than methods are mostly with the religious right.

That's generously assuming people on the right sincerely believe in the trickle-down, supply-side crap they spout. I mean, some must, since they aren't even on the supply side, and can only be waiting for something to trickle down on them.

"it's gonna take more than that."

So how many people have to doe, or get shot , for the score to be even. I mean, who's winning?

I'd put it like this: In what ways do people want to restrict what other people do, and why?

Good question, HSH! A glimmer of insight here, perhaps?

I'll have to get that book.

who's winning?

Hard to say, marty. Currently, I'd say the conservative right and reactionary wealth is in the driver's seat. I'd not be surprised at a counter-claim from you, but that's how I see it out here on the stool between bobm (damn those bobs)and standard issue Dem liberals/progressives.

I think everyone wants us all to be happy and healthy, and wants all of our kids to be well-adjusted and as successful as they want to be. Everyone wants all of us to not live in material need.

I see no evidence that current Republican policy is at all shaped to achieve that, so I don't believe that happiness, health and success for others is what they want.

They also deny the concept of truth, and they are unwilling to support our democratic institutions. This makes me believe that they not (to borrow from Nancy LeTourneau) "honest opponents" but are toxic enemies.

Shooting them won't solve the problem, but neither will persuasion. I don't know how the problem gets solved, especially now that we stand so much to lose while they're in power. Talking about it is really all we have.

we're all losing.

the right in the US has a pretty long history of violence and attempted violence in this country. you can look up the details.

the left isn't perfect. mental illness knows no party.

but the violent rhetoric on the right comes from the very top, and it's getting louder and louder and more explicit and meets less condemnation every day. Trump winkwinks at his followers to shoot Hillary Clinton and he wins the fucking election.

and, think about this:
my wife works for a company in the US that provides family planning info and services to women in developing countries.

the office is in an unassuming office park. it's just an office: paper-shuffling, emails, conference calls, etc.. it's not a medical facility. but you will find no external signs giving the identity of the company. the doors have palm scanners. there are armed plain-clothes guards on premises at all times. they had an offsite party recently, additional armed guards attended.

why do they have to do this?

because decades of violent actions and rhetoric on the right has created this atmosphere. people who work there know people who were killed by anti-abortion lunatics.

I worked with people in two offices in Boston that had armed ex employees come in and shoot people, I wasnt there but we certainly added security. The "right" didnt create that problem.

Shitty people do shitty things. Other than Trump being an add who thinks he's witty and the occasional Tea Party, ass no one on the right is calling for violence.

Violent Anti abortion protesters aren't "the right" anymore than ISIS is "Muslims". They're terrorists.

The "right" didnt create that problem.

The right has exacerbated the problem by championing gun culture.

Rand Paul's tweet is certainly pertinent to whether Republicans call for violence, and it's just one example.

The "right" didnt create that problem.

they sure as shit created the problem i described!

no one on the right is calling for violence.

???

"And we may have to reassert that proper constitutional balance, and it may not be pretty. So, I’d much rather have an election where we solve this matter at the ballot box than have to resort to the bullet box.” -Larry Pratt
“if this Congress keeps going the way it is, people are really looking toward those Second Amendment remedies.”

- Sharon Angle


"The 2nd Amendment…is a Constitutional right to protect your children, your family, your home, our lives, and to serve as the ultimate check against governmental tyranny — for the protection of liberty."
- Ted Cruz

Ted Nugent for the last 20 years.

Sarah "Reload" Palin.

want more?

They're terrorists.

the two are most certainly not mutually exclusive.

So Larry Pratt, not a politician in any party, Sharron Angle who couldn't get elected to anything outside her state assembly and Ted Cruz along with Rand Paul who are citing the constitutional right and why it was included, and two complete nut cases who are not part of Republican or right wing leadership anywhere.

Do you have a point?

Violent Anti abortion protesters aren't "the right"...

But, are they on "the right"? They certainly aren't on "the left." I don't think they're in "the middle." I wouldn't say that they're just apolitical, since they are attempting to further a political agenda.

I'm fully willing to admit, say, that the precious snowflakes who cause all this trouble over their lack of safe spaces on college campuses are on the left, even though I think many of them have gone off the rails.

Why can't you do the same with anti-choice terrorists, Marty?

...and two complete nut cases who are not part of Republican or right wing leadership anywhere.

Sarah Palin was the Republican governor of Alaska and the Republican nominee for Vice President of the United States, if my memory serves. No, she does not currently hold office, but she got pretty damned far with wide popularity on "the right." And she held enough sway in the last election, only months ago, that she was invited to speak at Trump rallies.

Ted Cruz along with Rand Paul who are citing the constitutional right and why it was included

So shooting at tyrannical congressmen is a Constitutional right?

But, are they [anti abortion protesters] on "the right"? They certainly aren't on "the left." I don't think they're in "the middle." I wouldn't say that they're just apolitical, since they are attempting to further a political agenda.

I think you can make a case that the left/right axis isn't the only one available. Libertarian views, for example, seem to run at right angles -- that is, you can be either a liberal or conservative, and still be libertarian on a particular issue.

The anti-abortion activists are an example of the anti-libertarian. They want to tell, and specifically to have the government tell, other people how to run their lives.

Not saying that most of them aren't "on the right" on a lot of issues. Just that their behavior on this issue is anti-libertarian more than it is conservative (or reactionary).

yeah Marty, my point is that your party is steeped leaf to root in violence.

of course you're going to to defend it no matter what, handwave it away, deflect and stick your fingers in your ears. because you're nothing if not a good soldier.

citing the constitutional right and why it was included

yeah, let's cite that right:

A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.

see anything in there about murdering politicians you don't like?

no? but what about the intent...


well, if you're going to cite that right as being a justification for killing politicians you disagree with, then you've just endorsed Hodgkinson's actions.

hsh, Yeah, ok, Palin is a right wing nut case who garnered a lot of press from her short lived political career.

I can categorize anti abortion extremists and racial extremists as far right wing terrorists if the left stops then calling anyone on the right a terrorist by association and counting every act of violence by a clearly fringe group typical of the right.

The "right" isn't advocating violence or suggesting 2nd Amendment solutions, any more than the "left" that I was part of in the early seventies was calling for armed insurrection.

It's not a contest to see how many people we can categorize on each side that are extremists. As far as I can tell even the vast majority of Republican leaders are pretty staunchly against violent solutions to our problems.

In fact, the left is very loud that they are hoping for no violence as that leaves them to be in charge. Well, in one breath, in the next they are the demon seed supporters of violence. It is actually sometimes confusing which they are.

"So shooting at tyrannical congressmen is a Constitutional right?"

Absolutely, a right and obligation in the face of tyranny, nothing close to which we are experiencing today. Full stop. 2018 elections are coming up, if they get cancelled I will grab a gun with you.

The "right" isn't advocating violence or suggesting 2nd Amendment solutions,

the leader of your party did. and your party overwhelmingly supports him, still. if such rhetoric wasn't at home in your party, he wouldn't have been nominated and elected by your party.

Absolutely, a right and obligation in the face of tyranny

so long as you get to judge what constitutes tyranny, obviously.

I see, you get to decide what counts as tyranny. purposefully and knowingly preventing people from voting is pretty tyrannical, isn't it? I mean, you can't say as long as there are elections, when one party is systematically preventing people from voting.

"(...)...are an example of the anti-libertarian. They want to tell, and specifically to have the government tell, other people how to run their lives."

It is well past time to dispense with this rather odd notion that so-called libertarians don't want to "have the government tell other people how to run their lives."

They most certainly do. In this regard they are no different than any other political movement.

"so long as you get to judge what constitutes tyranny, obviously. "

Sure, and it doesn't seem that hard to derive a definition by looking to see if the government is still operating within the Constitution and laws of the country. Which seems to me to be the actual definition. And we are pretty clearly still there.

I am not sure my subjective definition is the one we operate under.

Sure, and it doesn't seem that hard to derive a definition by looking to see if the government is still operating within the Constitution and laws of the country. Which seems to me to be the actual definition. And we are pretty clearly still there.

The Russian interference in the election, with the possible collusion by Republicans, as well as organized voter suppression by Republican governors, not to mention attempts at unconstitutional travel bans, violation of the emoluments clause, and other Republican hijinks are undermining people's trust that we're still fully operating under the Constitution. I would say that we're still hanging on, because of the courts, but it's worrisome.

sapient, well, I think you have mixed some opinion on policy with actual threats but the courts are doing their job and the DOJ is going above and beyond in creating a hanging judge for Trump. But yes, its worth watching.

It is interesting that a group of Clintonites are now the investigating team into Trump. Not sure that's what anyone thought would happen.

I had more faith in Moeller than I guess he deserved.

In fact, the left is very loud that they are hoping for no violence as that leaves them to be in charge

I'm having a hard time making sense of this.

Re: right wingers who call for violence:

I've spent hundreds to thousands of hours talking with conservative people, mostly but not exclusively online. Not just here, also places like RedState, whatever the heck the name of the blog was that Trevino set up after he left RedState, and similar.

A standard comment made, in all of those places, consistently, for the last 15 years, has been that at some point conservative people were going to have to start shooting liberal people.

More in sorrow than in anger, naturally.

But it was going to happen, and they were ready for it, because they had all the guns, and stupid cheese-eating surrender monkey liberals did not.

I've probably heard that hundreds of times over the last 15 years.

I can give you a very long list of prominent conservatives who threaten violence if their point of view does not prevail. Or, frankly, even if it does. By "prominent" I mean people who have made careers out of espousing their conservative point of view.

You, in turn, can try to tell us all that those people aren't "the right", and I won't argue the point. But they are all *on* the right.

Pound for pound, American conservatives are, extraordinarily, more likely to threaten political violence than Americans who are not conservative. It's a plain fact of life. Fortunately it's mostly talk, but it's talk that is not hard to find.

At all.

That fact may not be palatable to you, but that isn't my problem, nor is it anything I have anything to do with.

Your people, not mine. Take it up with them.

It is interesting that a group of Clintonites are now the investigating team into Trump.

Don't know if that's true, but if so, karma's a bitch.

The anti-abortion activists are an example of the anti-libertarian.

libertarians can be split on abortion. With some coming down on the side of, if the fetus is viable, it should be protected like any other person.

It is well past time to dispense with this rather odd notion that so-called libertarians don't want to "have the government tell other people how to run their lives."

They most certainly do. In this regard they are no different than any other political movement.

Can you give examples?

IIRC, Brett Bellmore was, and I imagine still is, an anti-choice libertarian.

Can you give examples?

At some point, property rights (created and defined by the government) must be coercively enforced.

Discuss.

I had more faith in Moeller than I guess he deserved.

I've been out all day at my best friend's mother's funeral, but I can't find anything sensible to explain why Marty has lost trust in Mueller (which I assume is what he meant). Given your news sources of choice, Marty, and assuming you don't necessarily give uncritical credence to Newt Gingrich and Kellyanne Conway on this matter, what has made you lose trust in him?

I suppose that's all true Russell, but what it means is there really are three groups and one is pretty underrepresented. I have no affiliation with any of the groups of people that you named except they probably vote Republican. So I am not a right winger after all, or they are the far right that for fifteen years has been more vocal than the far left or the center, or the just plain right.

I mean really, Redstate? I don't ever remember even being on that site, why would anyone step into that echo chamber?

In fact, the left is very loud that they are hoping for no violence as that leaves them to be in charge

So we're ("The Left") is in charge? From what I see this is of rather small comfort.

Libertarians would argue that property rights preexist government. If a society is to be governed by a rule of law, it has to include strong property rights, laws against theft and fraud, along with laws against coercion, assault, and murder.

Yeah bobbyp, rereading that it wasn't very clear. No, I hear that the right wants no violence because they are in charge and doing nothing will keep them that way. And in the next breath they are actively promoting violence. I see the right basically consistently condemning violence. I just stay confused.

"Libertarians would argue that property rights preexist government."

Yeah, how did that work out for Native Americans, by the way?

I was unaware that the Libertarian position on "receiving stolen property" is "keep it!" also, too.

"Libertarians would argue that property rights preexist government."

The Comanche argued that with the Texas Rangers.

GftNC,

First, he isn't a special prosecutor but special counsel supposedly focused on the Russian collusion charges and he has now expanded his team and focus to clearly go fishing for anything he can find on Trump. My greatest disappointment in the US justice system is to justify itself at all costs and the people he has hired make any Clinton investigation look like public defenders.

That said I would be ok with that if each of them didn't have a direct tie to either Clinton, Obama or Comey.

http://jacobitemag.com/2017/06/14/political-violence-is-a-game-the-right-cant-win/

I see the right basically consistently condemning violence.

apparently, "consistently" = "for the past 36 hours"

Marty, as I understand it, the recent expansion of his team etc is almost certainly to examine whether Trump was obstructing justice when (or if) he tried to get the Flynn investigation dropped, but that is clearly part of the Russia collusion issue. Isn't it?

Libertarians would argue that property rights preexist government.

Well, that is very nice, and it is very wrong. At some point, somebody claimed "this is mine" and was prepared to use force (aka coercion) to make it so.

Private property is a creature of the state. its relations are enforced by the state, irrelevant chicken-egg arguments notwithstanding.

It seems to me that the right in the USA is far too relaxed about talk of "second amendment remedies" and the like. I very much want the left to be different, hence my previous comment.

Of course, it's a requirement for peaceful opposition that there should be a functioning democracy. That makes it relevant that the Republicans currently holds the Presidency, with 3 million fewer votes than the Democrats, and majorities in the Senate, with 18 million fewer votes over the last three cycles, the House, with 1.4 million more votes in the last election, and the Supreme Court, with fewer votes in the presidential elections which led to 5 of the 9 appointments.

It would be a good thing if Republicans could acknowledge that there's a problem there.

Marty, as I understand it, the recent expansion of his team etc is almost certainly to examine whether Trump was obstructing justice when (or if) he tried to get the Flynn investigation dropped, but that is clearly part of the Russia collusion issue. Isn't it?

Also money laundering, which goes to who received what quid pro quo, and how that was hidden. It seems quite apparent that the Trump family and the Russian mob (oligarchs) plus Putin had a lot of things going on. Since I'm a blog commentator, I can state this from what I read in credible news reports. If I were a prosecutor, I'd need to get hard evidence, which is what, I hope, Mueller is doing. I hope he finds all of the R's who were involved, because I think this was an RNC thing.

I just stay confused.

That's the plan.;)

I would contend that currently there are two competing political camps in the USofA of roughly equal numbers.*

Let us call them "the left" and "the right".

Not surprisingly, advocates of political violence are to be found on either side(revolutionary socialism and its variants on the left, fascism and authoritarian populism on the right). I would assert that as percentages go, the percentage of those either openly advocating political violence or expressing a relative lack of concern about employing it is greater on the right than on the left, and markedly so.

It also strikes me as plausible that as the two camps become increasingly ideologically cohesive, the vitriol will only increase. Tit, meet Tat.

This won't end soon.

However, for want of something better to do, I have chosen a side.

*for purposes of simplicity, I shall leave out permutations of "the Deep State", or "they're both the same" for now, ideas that have appeal in some places on both sides.

It would be a good thing if Republicans could acknowledge that there's a problem there.

Yes. I live in VA, where most of the people are Dems. In statewide elections, we are represented by Dems. Congressional and local House of Delegate races, strongly R because of gerrymandering.

So what does my R Congressional Representative do, the guy who represents a whole city of Democrats? He says, "None of y'all voted for me, so I will ignore you." It would be nice if a bone were thrown more than once in awhile. But it's not done at all.

http://abcnews.go.com/US/gun-scalise-shooting-legally-purchased-assault-rifle-sources/story?id=48051990

I read in the early reports (not confirmed) of the Virginia shooting that a couple of the congressional baseball players spotted the shooter carrying his weapon in the suburban park housing the baseball field, itself located in suburban park in what was once a civilized country (I favor the high, cleats-up slide outside the baseline when taking out conservatives at second base in my baseball league) and joked that "someone" must be doing some bird-hunting, ha ha.

Isn't that a very peculiar incidence of what, one of those pussy feeling things liberals might call desensitization to madness.

Here's the weapon, or a variation thereof, that the shooter reportedly used:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SKS

http://www.vpc.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/06/SKS-fact-sheet.pdf

Now, leaving aside the Russian connection of the weapon (and everything else in this country) and the fact that the birds in the park took flight at the sight of the gun, unlike their stupid human counterparts, because even the former knew local ordinances did not allow ordnance shot at them in a park where children and congresspeople come to play, please peruse the list of our past and present mortal enemies (the fucking North Koreans, among others, for fuck sakes) who use the weapon for its designed and intended function .. to kill human beings, not partridges, in battle.

But we're such geniuses, we Americanos, that we hand out these weapons of war to these ill-formed beings we call citizens and we tell them "But whatever you do, don't employ this product for it's intended function, OK, Tex?"

"Well, yokay, but I plan to swan around with it in a public park. Is that OK?"

"That's no business of mine."

"But, let me ask you, as a hypothetical, what if I want to use it to defend against government tyranny."

"Well, some say, including Steve Scalise, probably at a KKK race fest, if not every time Barack Obama got his shorts in a twist and tearfully tried to reason with the citizenry regarding little kids and black people being shot to smithereens by weapons of war, and Rand Paul and so many of their fellow travelers, that such measures are baked into the American cake, so sure, if you want to use that weapon for such an end, then Aaron Burr will have no objection."

"OK. I understand that the government, which I find oppressive and tyrannical at the moment, is playing a little pickup baseball near here. Could you point me in the right direction. I just want to talk to them, maybe cheer them on."

"Take your first right, and then your next right, and then the next, but whatever you do, don't bear left."

"Thank you."

So let's say, the shooter hits the park and asks if he can sit in the dugout with the republican team and during the practice, identifies himself as a second amendment conservative, strikes up a meaty conversation (nice weapon there, boss) with the republican players, many of whom are staunch gun rights fanatics and would nod assent when he conversationally mentions that he is of the opinion that it is every citizens' right to use armed force against tyrannical government, in the same tone of voice that one might use if they were discussing the subtleties of the infield fly rule in baseball.

Does anyone see the problem here?

Let's assume Hillary Clinton (not a great fan of her myself, but still) was President now, having survived the trump/republican/russian attempt to steal the election and the couple of assassination attempts by enraged, armed trump republican cadres, was sitting in the opposite dugout, managing the opposing team (I guess we'll pretend the Secret Service wasn't there) and our guy, the shooter, stood up and bid adieu to his republican baseball players, picked up his weapon, and sauntered towards her dugout, ostensibly to discuss matters far and wide with Coach Clinton regarding her demands for limiting gun rights.

Would the Republican players have smirked and yelled after him in their Curly Howard falsetto, "Oh pigeon hunting, hanh?", like maybe they aren't government.

The other day a rancid right wing talk show, a trump lover and one of trump's favorite go to motherfuckers was interviewed by CNN on the crap generator by a rancid, misbegotten former FOX celebrity. This right wing talk show host, as he is called in polite company, and his millions of ass kissers, have harassed the parents of 20-some murdered children in Sandy Hook, demanding that they dig up their dead children and prove, first, that they are indeed dead, and second, show him the bullet wounds.

I don't believe we yet have a lefty political commentator who has asked Scalise to prove that we was shot, though if there is anything more ruthless than a republican who hasn't been shot, it's a republican who has and survives. Unless it's Jim Brady.

Maybe it's time we did.

Apparently trump is sure Scalise was shot, but you never know with that guy.

http://digbysblog.blogspot.com/2017/06/shutting-out-public.html

Those guys still have their guns and Democrats still show up for public townhall meetings.

Meanwhile (swiped from Hullabaloo) this woman believes her government is tyrannical. Her legal petitions are ignored:

"Senator Tillis,

I think you probably know who I am. I am the mother of a young man who died because he lacked access to health care. You had me arrested for trying to speak to you when you were Speaker of the House in North Carolina about the importance of access to health care. You were one of the leaders in the fight to withhold Medicaid from a half million people in this state, sentencing some 2,000 of them to death every year.

The ACA would have saved my son’s life because it forces insurance companies to not punish people who have pre-existing conditions.

My son had a birth defect. Like many young people, he decided to take a year off college when he was 19. Little did we know this common decision would be a fatal one for him. He was booted off my policy and then discovered he couldn’t buy insurance at any price because a birth defect is a pre-existing condition – as though he had decided as a zygote to have a birth defect.

This birth defect left him extremely vulnerable to an aggressive form of colon cancer, and he needed a colonoscopy every year. When he lived in New York, he had a doctor who would allow him to pay for his colonoscopies in monthly installments. By age 25, he had already had pre-cancerous polyps removed, so he had a near certainty of developing cancer if he couldn’t get his annual colonoscopies. But when he moved so he and his wife could go back to college, he discovered he could not get a colonoscopy unless he paid $2,300 in cash up front. No credit cards, no checks, no installments, nothing.

When he got sick he went to the ER three times and came away with three wrong diagnoses, three wrong medications and three large bills. You see – and I’m sure you know this – the emergency room only has to stabilize you; it does not have to look for the cause of your problem.

By the time anyone did anything, my son had stage 3 cancer. It was too late to save his life.

My son was a student, he worked 30 hours a week and he was a volunteer. He was an extraordinary young man.

But none of that mattered. He was sentenced to death – a slow and excruciating death – for having a birth defect. He had to leave his wife to get Medicaid and although he had applied for disability when he first became sick, his approval took 37 months and he was dead nine days before his first check arrived.

I tell you this story because, at the time he died, 45,000 Americans were dying every year from lack of access to health care, according to a study by Harvard Medical School that was published in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

The ACA has saved more than half of those lives. The uninsured rate in this country right now is at an historic low. The law is saving tens of thousands of lives every year, and to repeal it is tantamount to murder.

No, that statement is not overstating things. You are working on killing more than 25,000 innocent Americans every year. Those are human beings, Senator, and their lives matter a whole lot to me and to all the people who love them.

I have to face every damn day without my beloved son. I get up every morning longing to hear his voice again, devastated that I will never laugh at another one of his outrageous jokes or taste his cooking or have another late-night conversation about philosophy with him. I will never hear him tease me about being a Red Sox fan, or look for my chocolate stash only to discover he found it and left me just one little piece.

Perhaps it’s time to turn your back on your corporate overlords and become truly pro-life. Vote no on repealing the ACA. Vote to save the lives of the people who will die without insurance.

You have to know what you’re about to do is wrong.

If you go ahead with this, I hope and pray that you will burn in hell.

Leslie Boyd"
Candler, NC"

I think her guns should be confiscated, but republicans are threatening to stop holding public townhall meetings because they are ascared.

Steve Scalise handed that weapon to his would-be killer and counseled keeping it in reserve to combat tyrannical government of the sort that would provide that woman's son with health insurance.

The shooter said "Hey you make the rules, Ace."


"I mean really, Redstate? I don't ever remember even being on that site, why would anyone step into that echo chamber?"

Yes, several of us subjected ourselves to the warping.

But then we are acquainted with the poisonous snake that crawled up the republican party's fundament, while you labor under the delusion that party's echo is your own, innocent voice and not the hissing of a reptile.

Why wouldn't you sample the echo with which many of the elected republican party's officials chambered themselves and even guest-wrote for?

Are you familiar with FOX News? They have a motto. Fat guy use to run it and mash the ladies?

http://www.motherjones.com/kevin-drum/2017/06/vice-president-pence-lawyers-up/

Someone seems to have faith that Mueller going to get to the bottom of things.

The biggest, most horrendous bottom in American history. A bottom that could end a country.

he isn't a special prosecutor but special counsel supposedly focused on the Russian collusion charges and he has now expanded his team and focus to clearly go fishing for anything he can find on Trump.

I'm not quite clear where you get the "fishing expedition" idea. If he's looking at collusion with Russia, looking at (possible) attempts to interfere with that investigation would seem entirely within his remit. And looking at possible financial transactions between the two parties also seems entirely routine for such an investigation.

Or is there something else he is looking into that I'm not aware of?

Or is there something else he is looking into that I'm not aware of?

Marty doesn't want to be embarrassed by Republican perfidy. Marty doesn't care if there was perfidy; he, like most Republicans, doesn't want to own it.

Count, love you, esp. your 8:16 pm. So sad, but such a perfect narrative. I wish I could do what you do when confronted with the [very few] folks I encounter and need to convince.

wj, I will bet they never find anything to do with the Russians, it has been almost a year they have been investigating that, so they will look at everyone's personal finances, business dealings having nothing to do with the campaign or Russia until they find something on somebody and try to justify that as justifiable prosecutorial overreach.

Save this. It may be Trump, more likely Manafort, probably not Flynn. But it won't have anything to do with his charge. It's just an excuse at this point to look at everyone's shut.

Dear Marty and all of you:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PwXai-sgM-s

I mean really, Redstate? I don't ever remember even being on that site, why would anyone step into that echo chamber?

1. I wanted to talk with people who weren't like me
2. pre-Regnery it wasn't really an echo chamber

Libertarians would argue that property rights preexist government.

John Locke would argue that property rights derive from mixing your labor with a resource.

Nice, timeless.

Save this

here's the thing.

Trump is a crook. he is a chiseler, a fraud, a cheat, a swindler. has been for decades. surrounds himself with criminals. not a good guy. not even a good businessman.

he's just rich, that's all.

when you're the ceo of a private, closely held private company, you can maybe get away with that.

when youre the POTUS, the bar is higher. people pay closer attention.

which is as it should be.

i'm sure mueller with find all kinds of dirt, on all kinds of people. because they are dirty. there is dirt to be found.

dont want to be subjct to that kind of scrutiny, dont run for potus.

save this - there is nothing that is gonna come down on trump that he hasn't brought down on his own head.

John Locke would argue that property rights derive from mixing your labor with a resource.

The homestead principle.

"Locke believed that even in the state of nature an individual could own property — in other words, property rights pre-exist government; they are not merely a grant of government. In a natural state, man has a sole right to his own person and shares a right to all resources, but in applying his labor, he could convert common resources into his private property:

"Though the earth and all inferior creatures be common to all men, yet every man has a property in his own person; this no body has any right to but himself. The labor of his body and the work of his hands, we may say, are properly his. Whatsoever then he removes out of the state that nature hath provided and left it in, he hath mixed his labor with, and joined to it something that is his own, and thereby makes it his property. It being by him removed from the common state nature hath placed it in, it hath by this labor something annexed to it, that excludes the common right of other men. For this labor being the unquestionable property of the laborer, no man but he can have a right to what that is once joined to, at least where there is enough and as good left in common for others."

'Hobbes vs. Locke': The battle continues

Count, Leslie Boyd's letter is a perfect indictment of the Republicans' determination to repeal. Thank you. Wherever you got it, it should go viral across America if it hasn't already, and be in Indivisible's mail outs, or anybody's mail outs who are giving helpful info to protesters at any Republican Town Halls where the representatives are supportive of the effort to repeal.

I will bet they never find anything to do with the Russians

Trump has already, in his private life, gotten himself mixed up with the Russian mob in order to finance his projects. found himself the target of a criminal investigation and everything - one that was only dropped when the prosecution's witnesses suddenly refused to cooperate.

it would be no shock to find he's dipped into that same well again.

and, since we spent the better part of Obama's second term sniffing around HRC's linens to find out if she personally and deliberately killed a bunch of people in Libya, we clearly can spare the energy to find out if Trump colluded with the same Russians who, without question, hacked our election.

yes, it might cause your team some embarrassment.

I'm not quite clear where you get the "fishing expedition" idea.

it's the hot new tune all conservatives are singing this week!

On health care one problem is that the party of non science deniers rolls out tragic but completely uninformed people's stories and ignores the statistical realities, because in this case facts are not what supports their position. Here is one example, to go with the Kaiser estimate I have referenced before:

www.google.com/amp/s/www.forbes.com/sites/theapothecary/2017/01/30/beware-of-false-claims-that-obamacare-repeal-will-kill-thousands-of-americans-part-i/amp/

also from the author of the article Marty links to, this hot take:

Jill Stein and Hillary Clinton could have saved the lives of at least 5,000 children had they invested in malaria prevention efforts rather than recounting presidential votes in Wisconsin. Similarly, the vast amount of spending under Obamacare could have saved tens of thousands of American lives.

lol.

doesn't really seem like he's an objective voice.

I'm not sure any discussion of this topic warrants an lol.

LOL.

dont want to be subjct to that kind of scrutiny, dont run for potus.

Per Howard Stern, who is apparently as close to a long-term friend as Trump has, the goal was to finish second in the Republican primaries and then hold NBC up for a bunch more cash for the Apprentice renewal. There was no graceful way to quit when things turned out better than that. Stern says he believes the POTUS job will kill Trump.

on the bright side, one of this week's mass shootings has maybe stirred Ted Nugent's wife to convince Ted Nugent to STFU with the violence already.

http://www.avclub.com/article/ted-nugent-announces-kinder-gentler-nuge-wake-alex-256897

that would be this Ted Nugent:

Ted Nugent, on-stage, 2007: "Obama, he's a piece of shit. I told him to suck on my machine gun. When I was in New York, I said 'Hey Hillary, you might want to ride one of these into the sunset, you worthless bitch'"

Ted Nuggent, interviewed in 2012: "We need to ride into that battlefield and chop their heads off in November. If Barack Obama becomes the next president in November, again, I will either be dead or in jail by this time next year.”

Ted Nugent, via Facebook in 2016: "Obama & Clinton[...] should be tried for treason & hung. Our entire fkdup gvt must be cleansed asap."

Good for her.

"on the bright side, one of this week's mass shootings has maybe stirred Ted Nugent's wife to convince Ted Nugent to STFU with the violence already."

Squirrels are taking a wait-and-see approach to his development.

good for all of us, potentially.

the less of this violent rhetoric Fox News and the rest of the conservative propaganda machine brings to the ears of the heavily-armed and perpetually-angry GOP base, the better.

Last night, my son received the President's Award for Educational Excellence during the 8th grade closing ceremony at his middle school. He received this award for getting A's in every class during every marking period in every year of his 4-year middle-school career.

The certificate has the signature of one Donald J. Trump on it - something my son wryly noted on the ride home from the ceremony.

Fortunately, the school also does a Principal's Award for the same level of achievement. It's a nice wooden plaque, free of any references to The Donald.

Congrats to your son, hsh, thats an awesome achievement, particularly for middle school. Great kid, great parenting.

What Marty said, hsh. Well done (to your son, of course)!

Pat Buchanan:

http://www.theamericanconservative.com/buchanan/a-long-history-of-leftist-hatred/comment-page-1/#comment-8263459

I have the first comment up and it is a mere question.

It's in moderation, which is to say, Buchanan can't handle it.

If not asylum for Comey, then perhaps extraordinary rendition:

http://washingtonmonthly.com/2017/06/15/vladimir-putin-would-have-james-comey-killed/

Great news, hsh, and congrats to his hard work.

Be proud but don't make a bumper sticker out of it. ;)

Thanks, everyone. He's a swell lad. (But the irony of that signature...)

My son is one sixteenth Puerto Rican, so I'm considering this on topic.

New Open Thread coming momentarily....

But Puerto Rican statehood also represents a unique opportunity to reform American federalism. Accepting a new state with markedly different problems and programs means acknowledging that states aren't interchangeable. We should welcome Puerto Rico and, while we're redefining what constitutes our union, rexamine the power dynamic between Washington and the states.

The Federal Government Ruined Puerto Rico: Puerto Rican statehood is an opportunity to redefine American federalism.

I'm not sure any discussion of this topic warrants an lol.

here's a whole bunch more!

http://www.lawyersgunsmoneyblog.com/2017/06/health-care-policy-forum-kindly-mavericky-grandpa-mccain

the GOP has no idea what they're doing. they're completely useless.

My opinion, which is mine, is that PR can have independence, statehood, or "continue as a territory", whichever one they want.

It's all good, in other words.

The problem has been that they don't seem to be able to come to a decision, certainly not by the overwhelming margins that would be appropriate for such a momentous decision.

Maybe they need to secede from themselves.

I suspect that, in the past, prospective states did not hold a referendum on statehood. Their territorial governments simply made the decision. So no reason why Puerto Rico couldn't do the same.

The brazenness of the corruption is awe-inspiring:

http://juanitajean.com/the-best-people/

I wish I had taught my kid to lie, cheat, and steal at will. He'd be a better fit in America, instead of honing his science chops all the way to a doctorate, where he will be maligned as whatever these ghoulish fucks think scientists are.

say what you will about the all-encompassing corruption and incompetence of the Trump administration, at least they're not liberals!

Thank God she's not an attorney:

http://www.esquire.com/news-politics/politics/news/a55684/trump-hires-event-planner-nyc-housing/

I suspect that, in the past, prospective states did not hold a referendum on statehood.

Post 1870 or so, a referendum has been part of the process for all new states, either to kick things off or combined with approval of a draft state constitution.

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