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November 02, 2019

Comments

It seems like there's always places where science needs more experiments to determine how things really work. For example, this on the current state of cosmology.
https://www.washingtonpost.com/science/scientists-are-baffled-whats-up-with-the-universe/2019/10/31/31fc42e4-f353-11e9-8cf0-4cc99f74d127_story.html

Our understanding will never be perfect. But, contra some, that doesn't mean we know nothing. Nor that any theory is just as good as any other.

There is just a gigantic 3D video screen (radius about 100 lighthours) around the (static) Earth. We'd see what happens when Voyager 2 crashes into it, if mankind would not meet its sticky end a few years earlier.

I hope no one else has had the miserable time I've had with Apple's new Mac OSX release (10.15, Catalina). Starting with the initial installation hanging part-way through, it's been most of three weeks of niggling little things: fix this, fix that, fix something else.

Harmut,
too late.

The aliens have already come to Earth.

Last night, they replaced all your stuff with exact duplicates.

Tomorrow, they'll change them back again, just to mess with your head.

Tell the authorities, if you dare.

I wonder how they got past the sock gnomes?

Mind meld with the sock gnomes?

what strikes me in the OP is how advances in our understanding of the physical world always seem to require suspending our intuitive sense of how things work.

obviously the sun goes around the earth, but it doesn't.
obviously the earth is flat, but it isn't.
obviously things either happen at the same time or not, but that's not actually true.

I wonder what blinders we wear now that people will look back at 100 years from now and shake their heads.

I wonder what blinders we wear now that people will look back at 100 years from now and shake their heads.

Tax cuts increase revenue.

Naw they'll still be saying that

I wonder what blinders we wear now that people will look back at 100 years from now and shake their heads.

Why didn't they listen to that Michael Cain fellow?

Whatever you think of Harris' merits (or otherwise) as candidate, this seems to me to be a fair question:

https://www.politico.com/magazine/story/2019/11/05/how-kamala-harris-went-from-female-obama-to-fifth-place-229901
Mark Thompson, a veteran radio host and NAACP activist who spoke with Harris on his “Make it Plain” show on SiriusXM, questioned why Biden could do a 180-degree turn on justice reform, including coming out against the death penalty after 40-plus years of support, while Harris has been tagged by progressives as being too tough on crime....

"Why didn't they listen to that Michael Cain fellow?"

Too smart, too much expertise, too reasonable, and too much experience in government.

You have Deep State written all over you, and stupidity just will not stand for that.

I hope no one else has had the miserable time I've had with Apple's new Mac OSX release (10.15, Catalina).

I'm clearly doing something wrong, as I have yet to notice any difference at all since I installed it.
(Other than the nagging invitations, which I invariably ignore, to explore its new functions and capabilities.)

why Biden could do a 180-degree turn on justice reform, including coming out against the death penalty after 40-plus years of support, while Harris has been tagged by progressives as being too tough on crime

"progressives" don't like Biden either.

Harris had one big breakout moment early on, and then took a bunch of big swings that didn't connect and which made her look ineffective.

Why didn't they listen to that Michael Cain fellow?

LOL.

My lead time from wherever I'm at at the moment, to "why didn't I listen to that Michael Cain guy?" is less like 100 years, and more like a week and a half.

Thanks for hanging around with us.

Harris had one big breakout moment early on, and then took a bunch of big swings that didn't connect

Don't disagree. It's too bad, because she has a kick ass and take names quality that IMO would be useful.

maybe she could be AG or Biden's unpaid, globe-hopping, under-the-table and of-the-books, fixer and arm-twister.

i think that's an official position now.

off-the-books, definitely not of-the-books

I'm clearly doing something wrong, as I have yet to notice any difference at all since I installed it.

To get the initial install to finish cleanly, I had to find a USB keyboard (I normally use a Bluetooth one), plug it into my Mini, and hit Cmd-L every few minutes. This worked for many people whose installation hung, but no one seems to know why it works.

I'm an old UNIX guy, and take them at their word when they say "It's UNIX underneath." This has become less true over time. Looking back at my notes, most of the other breakage had to do with it becoming even less UNIX-like this time.

maybe she could be AG or Biden's unpaid, globe-hopping, under-the-table and of-the-books, fixer and arm-twister.

Harris could be looking at either an AG nomination or even (depending on who the nominee is) a VP slot**. Has the advantage that she can take either one, and her Senate seat will still be ultra-safe D.

** Probable not for Warren or Buttigieg. But for Biden or Sanders maybe a useful bit of diversity for the ticket. Of course, other than a Biden/Sanders ticket, I'm not sure how you get a "two old straight white guys" D ticket....

There's too many OSWGs on all sides.

There's too many OSWGs on all sides.

Well if you just picked at random from the total population you'd expect 1/3 straight white guys. If you consider just "people involved in politics" you get more guys, and the age distribution skews older. So even at 1/2 OSWGs you're not seeing anything noteworthy.

I suppose that you can argue that, to reflect their voters, Democrats should expect more from other groups. But still, is the current candidate pool wildly out of pattern?

But maybe I misunderstood the comment, and you were objecting to the demographics of the total population.... ;-)

Please reduce the number of OSWG by 2/3.

I am Not A Crank.

It just seems like the OSWGs and OSWgals are too welded to the politics of the last century. There needs to be a cleaning up of the layered mess the boomers made. Not just adding more layers.

There's too many OSWGs on all sides.

The OSWG dream team.

Although I am making a (perhaps incorrect) assumption about the "S" part. They do seem inseparable....

In any case, we could do worse.

Really, I just have to SMH and laugh.

"Oh, *that* conversation with Zelensky's staff!".

I think wj's right, we should all give thanks that the crooks are so incompetent.

Nothing like discovering that you're looking at a perjury charge to "clarify" and "refresh" one's recollections.

Of course it also helps that loyalty in Trumpland is all one way. Reduces the willingness of his toadies to take a bullet for him when push comes to shove, 'cause they know he's only got their backs for sticking a knife in.

(In a competently run crime family, the 23% of the population who are true believers are where Trump would recruit his staff. Sadly, they are short of the Central Casting types he wants. For a form over substance guy, that's a deal breaker.)

With 99 percent of precincts counted, the Republican governor of Kentucky is down roughly 1%. Of course, he was the most unpopular governor in the country; but then 538 says Kentucky is 26% more Republican than the country as a whole. And he's still losing.

Less than 12 hours before the polls opened, Trump was there campaigning for him. Since everything is always all about him, Trump said: “If you lose, they will say Trump suffered the greatest defeat in the history of the world. You can’t let that happen to me.” Well, it looks like they did.

And Moscow Mitch, one of the least popular senators in the country, maybe has a problem next year. Here's hoping.

OK, time to cry 'fraud', demand a recount (or 10) or annullment. And if that should not work strip the illegitimate (= non-GOP) winner of all the powers of his office before he takes it. You know, the usual routine.

This is a really cool idea...
https://techxplore.com/news/2019-10-cooling-electricity.html

As a thought exercise, how many square kilometres of this would you need around the equator in order to reverse global warning ?

All this does is stop things getting so hot in the sun. The question is not much different in kind to what area of mirror would you need around the equator...

All this does is stop things getting so hot in the sun. The question is not much different in kind to what area of mirror would you need around the equator...

No - the difference is that this reflects most sunlight, but is transparent to IR, so it would actively cool the earth's surface during daytime.
A mirror would only prevent it heating up.

Er, I doubt it. There's IR from the sun also.

As a thought exercise, how many square kilometres of this would you need around the equator in order to reverse global warning ?

Many. You're talking about changing the albedo for an entire planet here. In round numbers, the literature estimates we'd need to reduce albedo by about 2.5 W/m^2 from the current 250 W/m^2 -- very close to a 1% reduction. The area of the Earth is a bit over 500M km^2. Assume away all the second-order effects and we would be looking at about 5M km^2.

Plus the usual caveats. It wouldn't do anything about some of the other parts of climate change, like ocean acidification. It would almost certainly have unknown impacts on weather patterns.

Here's a starting point for reading.

...but is transparent to IR, so it would actively cool the earth's surface during daytime.

The whole thing about greenhouse gases is that they capture IR radiated from ground level so that it doesn't escape. If the stuff were completely transparent to IR, it would have no effect. In terms of global warming, the only effect would be to stop incoming light energy from being absorbed and then reradiated as IR.

ISTM the question is how much IR would come in from the filtered sunlight versus how much would go back out from the ground, given the lack of heating from non-IR sunlight. (Not that I know the answer.)

I think you’re all missing the point here.

The ground radiates considerably more IR than it receives through insolation - which is why this thing works on a small scale to cool what’s underneath it even in the midday sun.

Some detail here:

https://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/features/EnergyBalance/page5.php
Finally, a net of about 17 percent of incoming solar energy leaves the surface as thermal infrared energy (heat) radiated by atoms and molecules on the surface. This net upward flux results from two large but opposing fluxes: heat flowing upward from the surface to the atmosphere (117%) and heat flowing downward from the atmosphere to the ground (100%). (These competing fluxes are part of the greenhouse effect, described on page 6.) Remember that the peak wavelength of energy a surface radiates is based on its temperature. The Sun’s peak radiation is at visible and near-infrared wavelengths. The Earth’s surface is much cooler, only about 15 degrees Celsius on average. The peak radiation from the surface is at thermal infrared wavelengths around 12.5 micrometers.

What this device does is reflect most of the solar wavelengths, while being pretty transparent to the IR wavelengths which radiate from the ground.

So you get a fair percentage of the cooling by radiation which occurs at night.

I’m not proposing this as any kind of solution to global warming - that would be silly - but it might, for example, make a very big contribution to the problem of air conditioning the Middle East.

Well, I don't see how I was missing the point. Harrumph!

I unforgivably overlooked your comment, hairshirt.

A thousand apologies.

The original article I posted does give some clues to the answer, as does the NASA link.

I’m not proposing this as any kind of solution to global warming - that would be silly...

Then why does your initial thought experiment say "reverse global warming" :^)

There are people who are very serious about increasing the planet's albedo in order to control the temperature change. Usually by introducing aerosols in the stratosphere.

Then why does your initial thought experiment say "reverse global warming“

It was just that - a thought exercise.

But it’s nonetheless an interesting technology which might just help make habitable spaces in areas of the world that are becoming too hot for human habitation.
In Dubai for example, they air condition outdoor areas to make them liveable - and in the summer months something like 70% of their total energy usage is for air conditioning.

To do some of that at zero energy cost, alongside a minor global cooling effect, is not nothing.

Thanks for the interesting link, Michael.
Bit too long for me to read tonight, but I will get around to it.

@Nigel,
Parts of northeast India are on track to become uninhabitable at times by mid-century: a combination of heat and humidity (35 °C wet-bulb temperature) that kills anyone if sustained for several hours. High population and widespread poverty probably rules out air conditioning on the necessary scale. Something like the aerogel insulation might be an alternative. I also expect that India will be the first country to try the stratospheric aerosol form of geoengineering. It can be relatively cheap if you don't mind some side effects, and if the models are right it could be at least locally effective in only a few years.

Wow. Just wow.
https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/2019/11/06/are-bill-taylors-notebooks-trumps-nixon-tapes/

It appears that Ambassador kept nearly hour-by-hour notes on what was happening in Ukraine. From the day he arrived. It's not quite Nixon's White House tapes. But it's still going to be hard to dismiss. (Not that they won't try. Or at least try to distract.)

Or at least try to distract

by, for example, putting the whistleblower's name in giant headlines and claiming his past work for the government means Trump is vindicated in everything - as Breitbart is currently doing ?

This is interesting.

https://www.thedailybeast.com/ukrainian-president-was-booked-to-announce-biden-investigation-on-cnn-says-report

The mere announcement of an investigation on CNN, even if the investigation never got started thereafter, would be a political gemstone for Rump in a race against Biden. Neat!

The mere announcement of an investigation

Right?

See also....

"But Burisma..." would be the "But her emails" of 2020.

it's a total coincidence that Rudy is running the exact same plays he ran in 2016 with the "emails!" nontroversy.

The dreaded TPM paywall!!!

It appears that Ambassador kept nearly hour-by-hour notes on what was happening in Ukraine.

This is in the best traditions of the State Department. A senior State Dept person once said to me "It's the first rule of the State Department: CYA (cover your ass). And the way you do that is with a paper trail." As I said here when the Sondland-Taylor text exchange was first published, I don't see how he (Trump) survives this. Let's hope that's right (nothing is ever certain with these crooks).

Trump's only hope is that enough Republican Senators adopt the Lindsey Graham approach: "I refuse to look at the evidence because my mind is made up and I don't what to put that at risk."

Which is literally an admission that, if he did look at the evidence, he thinks he would be forced to remove Trump. Which says something about just how solid the case is already. (Not that I expect it to be enough to get 20 Republican Senators to do their civic duty....)

Good news for Senator Jones (D-Alabama): Jeff Sessions has announced that he's running.

Now Sessions has been pretty popular as a senator. On the other hand, Trump is real popular thete, too. And Trump hates him (for disloyalty), so will likely endorse someone else. All of which might just let Roy Moore squeeze thru and grab the Republican nomination again. And Jones already beat Moore once.

I don't see how he (Trump) survives this.

Trump survives this if enough people are getting what they want out of Trump, and if that matters more to them than the fact that the POTUS is flagrantly corrupt.

People get all kinds of things out of a Trump presidency. A lot of people - tens of millions - basically love the guy, as in would gladly take a bullet for the man. A lot of people don't really give much of a crap about Trump one way or the other, don't really enjoy the antics but don't really care as long as the markets are good, their taxes are low-ish, and they're making money. Some people actively dislike him, but can put up with it as long in exchange for getting generally conservative policies implemented.

The House can impeach Trump but then it goes to the Senate. It will take 67 Senators to vote him out of office. 53 Senators are (R), so 20 or more of them will have to vote against their own party. That seems, to me, highly unlikely.

If he gets through that, he will most definitely be the (R) nominee for POTUS in 2020, and I put his odds at willing at approximately 50/50. Maybe better, depends on who the (D)'s put up.

It is way more than possible that Trump will not only survive, but will be in office for another term. And who knows what kind of fnckery the (R)'s will cook up if that happens, maybe he'll extend that.

Millions and millions and millions of people either love the hell out of Trump, or find him sufficiently tolerable that they'll put up with him. To change that, they would need to decide that their preferences are less important than not having an obvious criminal grifter as POTUS. I'm not seeing any kind of trend in that direction, his approval numbers, while not that high, have been about as rock-solid as things like that get.

Trump is just an epiphenomenon. The people who love the guy, and/or don't really give a crap as long as they're getting what they want out of him, are the problem.

One thing I will say is that I will never, ever, ever, ever, ever take anyone seriously who (a) supports Trump at any level at all and (b) ever complains about corruption or malfeasance in government, again.

Never.

This crap is so blatant that anybody with half a brain can figure it out. That's either sufficiently important to you - more important than whatever it is you are getting out of POTUS Trump - or it's not.

If it's not, for a sufficient number of people, then Trump isn't going anywhere.

Trump's only hope is that enough Republican Senators adopt the Lindsey Graham approach...

I disagree. Graham can't look at the evidence because of his previous comment "If you could show me that, you know, Trump actually was engaging in a quid pro quo..." But the other Senators don't have that problem. I expect their approach to be, OK, so he used US aid to extort domestic political assistance, so what?

The Republicans had Bill Clinton bang to rights for lying about a blow job (when he ought to have told them to mind their own business). That didn't mean the Senate had to convict him.

It is way more than possible that Trump will not only survive, but will be in office for another term.

This is unfortunately true, and for all the reasons russell gives. I suppose my "I don't see how he survives this" was predicated on the fact that they (the text exchanges) were crystal-clear evidence of criminal malfeasance, and the naive assumption that that would be enough to do for him. But the collapse of any Republican pretence that they care about the rule of law, or corruption, means that the US has descended within one term into an openly lawless power grab. But russell is also right about this being an epiphenomenon and a symptom: the conditions for this to happen apparently so fast have been moving into place for years (gerrymandering, SCOTUS partisanship, Citizens' United etc etc). It is unspeakably depressing, but perhaps the activism of e.g. the sapients of this world will be enough to start reversing it. One can hope.

It is unspeakably depressing, but perhaps the activism of e.g. the sapients of this world will be enough to start reversing it.

Thank you, but I don't really deserve much credit. I wish I could do more.

I've taken some comfort in the fact that we can make some difference locally. But federal issues are what mean the most to me (the environment, decent treatment of immigrants, support for global human rights, etc.). I wish I knew how to be fearless and effective, but anger and despair seems to be a more common state of mind. It's helpful to be able to express all of this here.

crystal-clear evidence of criminal malfeasance

The stated policy of the DOJ is that a sitting POTUS cannot be indicted for criminal activity. The available remedies, per the DOJ, are impeachment or an election.

It's possible that other jurisdictions - e.g. New York State - will find Trump criminally liable for any number of things. Could charge him, try him, and find him guilty.

Absent impeachment or losing an election, I believe that even in that case, he would remain as POTUS.

Funny world we live in.

"Funny world we live in.'

It's going to be hilariously side-splitting when he is both impeached AND loses an election and STILL remains as POTUS, while hosting his new reality show from the Oval Office.

I can certainly see him trying it on.

Some people actively dislike him, but can put up with it as long in exchange for getting generally conservative policies implemented.

There's no reason (that we know of now) to expect Pence to get booted, too. So they don't really care whether Trump stays or goes. And if his popularity is low enough, they might actually prefer the prospect of Pence being the head of the ticket next year.

It's going to be hilariously side-splitting when he is both impeached AND loses an election and STILL remains as POTUS, while hosting his new reality show from the Oval Office.

Not to worry. If he loses (or the Senate boots him out), the Deep State** will toss him out in the street. By force if necessary.

I know Trump thinks the law doesn't apply to him. But in a case like this, he's going to find out that it does.

** That would be the dedicated civil servants in the Secret Service, who actually care about their oaths to defend the Constitution.

Find a parade, any fucking parade, and get in front of it.

https://www.marketwatch.com/story/trump-says-hes-considering-attending-parade-in-russia-in-may-2019-11-08?siteid=bigcharts&dist=bigcharts

Not to worry. If he loses (or the Senate boots him out), the Deep State** will toss him out in the street. By force if necessary.

I'm not so cheerfully confident about the former. If the Senate boots him, yeah, okay, the Rs are okay with it at that point, so he'll be gone. If he loses the election, well, that's a much more complicated dynamic, and all sorts of shenanigans could follow. See what the Rs are threatening in KY right now ... or at least as of last night. (I'm down with some kind of bug, not going to google for links.)

*****

GftNC: means that the US has descended within one term into an openly lawless power grab

A quibble, but the rest of your comment contradicts the "one-term descent" framing. This term has just been the tiny last step of the ladder, or stairway, or whatever metaphor you like. We've been sliding down it for a long time. Or being pushed, more like.

Merrick Garland. Newt. Saint Ronald. The decades during which the far right quietly drafted legislation to try out in the states concerning abortion, gay rights, voting rights, labor law....tweaking and tweaking, patiently waiting until they had stuff that was workable. And what about the states where incoming D governors have had the powers of the office stripped by outgoing/incumbent legislatures? (NC? WI? I can't remember.) What about the alleged ties to Opus Dei among people currently in positions of power? The Catholic Church does not keep its position in the world by relying on short-term thinking.

This is what I was thinking of when the Bene Gesserit was mentioned a week or so ago. I don't see a corresponding long-horizon campaign working on our side, but maybe pigs will eventually fly.

Find a parade, any fucking parade

Well, since the Pentagon won't give him one in DC, why not have his buddy Vlad do it? If nothing else, announcing that he's going sends a signal that expects to survive impeachment. (Of course, it might bother any remaining Cold Warriors in the Senate GOP. But Trump's incapable of thinking about that kind of secondary effect.)

Janie, I don't think we really disagree (or that I disagree with myself!) the last step off the ladder was the one that made it openly as opposed to covertly, sneakily lawless. By continuing to support Trump, the GOP have demonstrated beyond any doubt whatsoever that criminal behaviour of every kind (sexual, financial, traitorous) is perfectly acceptable to them, in a way they never have so openly before, as cleek and russell among others have been pointing out. What the results will be remains to be seen; as you imply many of us saw it happening for ages, but I guess the American public as a whole did not. Maybe enough of them do now.

"By continuing to support Trump, the GOP have demonstrated beyond any doubt whatsoever that criminal behaviour of every kind (sexual, financial, traitorous) is perfectly acceptable to them,"

No, just that it takes something really bad to impeach somebody. And any Republican is better than any Democrat.

For all the smoking guns that have been declared there still isnt an impeachable offense.

And any Republican is better than any Democrat.

Ahh Marty, I'm drunk and you're in the twilight zone. By the way, did you think Bill Clinton committed an impeachable offense?

Nope, didnt like what he did but nope.

No, just that it takes something really bad to impeach somebody.

blackmailing a foreign government to help with his re-election is not bad. got it.

So, after looking at a variety of maps again, I'm on the page with a number of other pundits: the Republicans have managed to piss off a lot of suburban voters.

there still isnt an impeachable offense.

literally the only thing that qualifies something as an impeachable offense is that it can garner enough HoR votes. that's all the Constitution requires.

blackmailing a foreign government to help with his re-election will be more than sufficient to get the votes.

See "blackmail" scary word. Dem talking point. But sure any HoR can impeach any President. And probably will from now on.

See "blackmail" scary word. Dem talking point.

you should probably try to avoid sounding like you're reading from a GOP press release when you say stuff like that.

And probably will from now on.

i'm sure. it's not like the GOP has anything else to offer.

I will withhold your (already authorised) military aid unless you publicly say you're investigating my most popular political rival and his family for corruption, even if it isn't true.

Hmmm. You characterise it.

I would like for you to work with the Attorney General to help to investigate the former VP and his son for potential criminal abuse of his position for financial gain.

Remember we are great friends and we have that hardware you need.


It seems he was acting in the best interest of the country and it would be his responsibility to try to get the facts. So I can do anything I want as long as I'm running for President?

I mean, are Joe Biden and his son above the law? Can they be investigated now that he probably wont win the nomination?

They can and should be investigated if there's any evidence they've broken the law. It is against the law for an American president to extort help against American political rivals from a foreign power.

For all the smoking guns that have been declared there still isnt an impeachable offense.

That's the open question, isn't it? That's the point of having the inquiry.

You're entitled to your opinion, but Trump will be impeached, or not, based on what comes out of the investigation.

And any Republican is better than any Democrat.

This is the crux of the matter, for you anyway.

Trump is an (R), you like the policies, so you will get his back regardless of what he is or does.

Biden pressured Ukraine to get rid of the corrupt prosecutor AFTER said corrupt prosecutor stymied and stopped any investigations into Burisma and Biden's son.
If he had done so BEFORE, you'd have at least a valid argument.

You're right russell, I have a limit, just pretty far from where you might think it should be.

I don't know all the facts, and as I mentioned I'm drunk (so blame the wine for any spelling and grammar mistakes), but if that's exactly right then Hartmut FTW

You know Marty, I've always been polite and respectful on here, however much I disagree with what someone says.

But when you say that you see nothing wrong with a president's using US aid as a lever to get a foreign power to help him smear a domestic opponent, what you're really saying is that you'll support Trump whatever he does.

That puts you firmly on the side of evil and outside the scope of civility.

You can fuck right off.

And I respectfully disagree with GftNC's view that Trump represents a one-term descent. The previous Republican president instituted the routine torture of prisoners. I understand why Obama chose to keep him onside, he's not included in this, but Dubya, his agents and his enablers, are evil too.

I'm not drunk, I've just had enough. There are not points to be made on both sides of this debate. There's right and there's wrong. Fuck the evildoers. That's all.


There's right and there's wrong. Fuck the evildoers. That's all.

Thank you.

In all fairness, drunk or not, my "one term descent" was heavily qualified and no let-out for the GOP or Dubya, than whom I could imagine no worse POTUS until this one emerged. I'm quite happy with "fuck the evildoers", I just don't think Marty is one of them.

I'm quite happy with "fuck the evildoers", I just don't think Marty is one of them.

His support for the evildoers doesn't speak highly of him.

He is misguided, proud and stubborn. He is not evil.

He is misguided, proud and stubborn. He is not evil.

Judging people's souls isn't my problem (or job). I'm sure he's fine other than the fact that he's putting a lot of energy into ruining the world. He knows his tunes though!

To quote one of Tony P's favourites: and tomorrow I will be sober. Good night all.

I'm not sure exactly how to respond. I think there is a legitimate objection to what Trump did. I also think 50m people or so think Joe should be investigated, not for political purposes.

It's easy to say fuck off, but in total not much really happened. The election is no more in danger from that than from the three year search for a smoking gun with Democrats clearly abusing their power in search of the brass ring. That abuse is constant and ongoing. It's a fishing expedition based on testimony of people who were "offended".

It's pretty clear they are trying to impact the election.

there still isnt an impeachable offense.

Except that it's bribery. Which is explicitly listed in the Constitution as an impeachable offense. No need to fret over what does or doesn't constitute "high crimes and misdemeanors".

It's not bribery. It's not blackmail. It's a President with pretty wide latitude in foreign affairs negotiating for a better deal. It's not clear from the facts its illegal.

Right and wrong is a different thing.

The distance between Marty's understanding of the plain facts on the ground and mine is so remarkably vast that it just seems pointless to even try to discuss any of this.

Investigate Joe Biden for what? What is he alleged to have done? Investigate him because "50m people" think somebody should? What do those people think he did? What information are they working from? And there is no political agenda behind the desire to investigate Biden?

The (D) are abusing their power? What power are they abusing? Why was and is Trump under investigation in the first place? Who started the investigation? Was it the (D)s?

It's too freaking much to try to walk back.

Everyone is entitled to their opinion, but nobody else is obliged to humor them.

Trump is a crook. He is and has been surrounded by people who are also crooks. That is why he is, and has been, under investigation.

The people who voted for him screwed up. It happens. But the rest of the world is not obliged to sit on their hands and passively accept the consequences of their bad judgement.

If you don't publicly state that you are investigating my chief rival and his son for corruption and malfeasance, I will not release millions of dollars in military aid that Congress has allocated for you.

That is what Trump is accused of presenting to Zelensky. If it's true, it is a gross abuse of power and against the law.

The point of the inquiry is to determine if it's true.

The rest is noise.

If you dont publicly state you are investigating the former VP who is being investigated for using his position for financial gain through his son. Same facts, different construction.

Who's investigating Joe Biden for the things you name?

Who's investigating Joe Biden for the things you name?

Don't doubt for a minute that somebody somewhere has started some kind of an investigation. Maybe even hired a PI -- one who has no qualms about taking money for doing nothing. Doesn't mean there's a real investigation.

Lest we forget, there are also the emoluments clause violations and multiple cases of probable obstruction of justice. It's open to debate whether the line of perjury was also crossed in these contexts. There were utterings from inside the administration that the boss should under no circumstances be allowed to get interviewed by investigators under oath since he would inevitably perjure himself. The RW talking point at the time was that this was the sole purpose of the enterprise, i.e. entrapping poor helpless DJT into making a harmless questionable statement* that then could be construed as perjurious justifying impeachment.

Btw, given that election campaigning now re-starts the very day after any election taking place, any action can be construed as motivated by the 'incoming' next election. Plus Dem POTUSes may not nominate any judges (and especially no justices) in the first or last eight years of their time in office (too close to an elecction) while GOPsters may do so up to inauguration day of the next POTUS.

*totally unlike the beyond-the-pale stuff of e.g. Bill Clinton (who also defiled the sacred Oval Office not a mere Moscow hotel suite)

The upside about those like Marty, who seem to have drunk pretty well the full bucket of Kool-Aid, is that they are contributing to the destruction of what has become the party of Trump.

It’s possible that he wins a second term. But very probably there will not be a Republican Congress to enable him as the Senate for now continues to do.

https://www.newyorker.com/news/our-columnists/trump-is-poison-for-suburban-republicansso-why-wont-they-turn-on-him
Looking ahead to 2020, the editorial concluded, “The fair judgment a year from Election Day in 2020 is that Mr. Trump is highly vulnerable in his bid for a second term.” That seems incontestable. Arguably, however, Republican Party leaders should be even more worried than the President. As I wrote earlier in the week, given the skewed geographical distribution of Trump voters and potential Trump voters, there is still a chance that he could pull another inside straight in the Electoral College to win a second term. That’s all he desires, of course. But the Republican Party was founded in 1854, and, if it wants to survive for another hundred and sixty-five years, it needs to align itself with some growing parts of the electorate rather than turning into an embittered rump party for rural working-class whites...

somebody somewhere has started some kind of an investigation.

Let's exclude Breitbart and QAnon.

Marty says "same facts, different construction", but extends my statement to claim that Biden Sr. is "being investigated for using his position for financial gain through his son".

So, not the "same facts". A new fact has been asserted.

I am not aware of any such investigation. Looked briefly, found nothing, outside of e.g. Breitbart et al.

There is a memo claiming corruption that was allegedly leaked by the Ukrainian AG's office, which even the Washington Times (NB: not to be confused with the Post) says is bogus.

Is that it?

I'm open to hearing new information. There has been an assertion that Joe Biden is the subject of an investigation due to allegations that he has corruptly taken advantage of Hunter's job at Burisma to enrich himself.

What investigation is that?

Also worth noting:

AFAIK none of the testimony in the inquiry so far claims that Trump et al wanted Zelensky to actually *investigate* Biden.

The "deliverable" appears to be the public statement. The actual investigation, not required.

Crook. Hence, inquiries.

It's a President with pretty wide latitude in foreign affairs negotiating for a better deal.

the deal he was negotiating was for himself.

there's no plausible explanation of why Trump chose to put so much energy - including an entirely separate channel run through his own personal yet unpaid lawyer - into one country in particular. general non-specific 'corruption' is everywhere, probably in every single country we give aid to. but Trump chose Ukraine as the target of his valuable time? why? because he thought he could use it to trigger a scandalous "investigation" into his likely opponent, Biden.

Trump chose to explicitly mention Biden and Crowdstrike in his call. Crowdstrike? this is a conspiracy theory from 2016 about DNC emails! what the hell does that have to do with the "country" ?

he was negotiating for himself. not for the country. for himself.

he was literally using the office for his own personal gain - as he has countless times with his hotels and Trump Tower rents, etc. - the G7 meeting would have been another.

and countless other people have confirmed this, under oath.

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