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Sunday, January 13, 2019

Sure, I Believe Trump...

Of course I believe Donald Trump's latest denials regarding the Mueller case. Why wouldn't I?

Manafort's sharing with Russia?
"Did you know Paul Manafort was sharing polling data from your campaign with the Russians?" "No. I didn’t know anything about that."

Stormy Daniels hush money?
"Did you know anything about the payment to Stormy Daniels?"
"No."
...despite already having signed a detailed letter admitting that there was no affair. Prior to its violation by Ms. Clifford and her attorney, this was a private agreement. Money from the campaign, or campaign contributions, played no roll in this transaction.
Business dealings in Russia during the campaign?
 I can tell you, speaking for myself, I own nothing in Russia. I have no loans in Russia. I don't have any deals in Russia.”
Oh, I get it! I am a very good developer, happily living my life, when I see our Country going in the wrong direction (to put it mildly). Against all odds, I decide to run for President & continue to run my business-very legal & very cool, talked about it on the campaign trail...
"Very legal & very cool."  I'm sure Trump has nothing to worry about...

Saturday, December 22, 2018

Still No Chaos, America?

Well, Donald Trump has been President for almost two whole years. But, don't worry, according to Trump, everything's fine, and their is no chaos in DC. At least that's what he's said previously. Let's take a new look, shall we?

Economically, many businesses are struggling because of his seemingly random tariffs on US trading partners. Those companies that do make money are often putting their profits into stock buybacks to inflate their company's worth and reward their stockholders--not plowing their money back into their businesses or into rewarding their workers. Many workers have not seen decreased taxes or raised wages. Retirement savings of Americans have drastically reversed through rash economic policies enacted by the White House. The deficit, meanwhile, has ballooned to nearly $22 trillion.

The US Government is currently in partial shutdown. Trump's Cabinet staff members come and go as though the White House is hosting an Open House mixer. Advisors to Trump are often not the(somewhat)  trained people originally chosen for that role (many dogged by their own ethics investigations), but instead are more often conservative media talking heads and vociferous fringe elements from the populace and the GOP. Trump has continually villainized law enforcement, legislators,  and the judiciary of the country.

And you'd have to think that's reduced our country's standing in the world. Trump's been tagged as publicly making more than 7500 lies/exaggerations/misstatements in just his first 700 days in office--far less than half the country believes his whoppers anymore (from the Washington Post). Allies privately discuss the instability of the US now, instead of that of Russia. Trump's Defense Secretary Mattis resigned because he has no faith in the leadership or values of the President of the United States (let that sink in for a moment).

And, unbelievably, new lies from Trump and his associates come out virtually every week regarding covered-up connections with Russia and Russian businesses. Even more unbelievably, Trump's moves, such as withdrawing US troops from Syria, seem to benefit Russia, as well.

To me, that's chaos. Wouldn't you agree?

To Trump, though, I guess it's just another day at the office.

Wednesday, December 5, 2018

Wisconsin's (GOP) shame

Shame.

 Wisconsin's GOP legislature just voted to scale back the incoming Democratic Governor's power, reduce early voting, possibly diminish open records, and provide GOP-legislative oversight for what had been Governor-led agencies. Despite the fact the GOP received many fewer votes than the Dems in the midterm elections, and that all state-wide offices were flipped from Rep to Dem. Even despite the fact the severely (and court-challenged) gerrymandering of legislative districts and voting limitations already put in place by the WI GOP tied the hands of the Dems.
Wisconsin's GOP has left a stain on this building.

And the WI GOP did it at 4 AM in an all-night, lame-duck, so-named "extraordinary session" so their GOP could keep their control over Wisconsin before their fuhrer, Scott Walker leaves office.

What really makes this extraordinary (which is what an extra session is really called), is they did it knowing the state had voted for Tony Evers. They hadn't suggested the changes before Evers was elected. If it was such an egregious situation, their GOP-controlled legislature surely would have done it before the election, right?

And now it goes to Walker's desk. Walker famously once promised to sign legislation that prohibited the Legislature from voting after 10 PM or before 9 AM.

"I have two teenagers and I tell them that nothing good happens after midnight. That's even more true in politics," he said in a statement. "The people of Wisconsin deserve to know what their elected leaders are voting on." 
And he's gonna sign it.
It's just another morally-bankrupt and ethically corrupt action, and well, it's just plain wrong, on the part of the state GOP. 
And it's shameful.

Saturday, November 17, 2018

What's that smell? Oh, WI's GOP

Something stinks in Madison. And I'm pretty sure I know which side of the aisle it's coming from.

It's not enough that Wisconsin's GOP so severely gerrymandered districts that the matter came before the Supreme Court.
From 2011, by the brilliant Phil Hands (WI State Journal)

It's not enough that the state GOP's restrictive voter ID laws likely suppress the voting of those that are elderly, minorities, or students--those that likely vote Democratic--so much so that a one-time member even bragged to local media that the laws would make it harder for Democrats to win.

In recent days, the Wisconsin GOP has even blatantly threatened to limit the powers of the duly-elected-by-the-people-of Wisconsin governor, Tony Evers (despite the GOP voter suppression techniques). The disingenuous and insulting statement from Assembly speaker Robin Vos (retrieved today from jsonline, Nov. 8, 2018): "If there are areas where we could look and say, 'Geez — have we made mistakes where we granted too much power to the executive,' I'd be open to taking a look to say what can we do to change that to try to re-balance it," Vos told reporters.

Yet another sleazy, underhanded policy move by Wisconsin's GOP.

And it doesn't end there. In an effort to uphold their ever-slipping death grip upon state politics, Walker and his pals are discussing moving the 2020 Wisconsin presidential primary --at likely a cost of millions of dollars--away from the date of the Wisconsin Supreme Court vote because the GOP anticipates more Dems will show up on the primary voting day, lessening their chance of keeping their conservative pick in this supposedly non-partisan post.

So, what's left for the Wisconsin GOP to do to continue to try to ensure their continued domination?

If there is something, don't worry, Wisconsin's GOP will give it a shot.

And, wow, that stinks.

Doesn't it?

Saturday, November 10, 2018

Walking Papers for Walker

Scott Walker is gone.

And none too soon.

Actually, about eight years too late.

Scott Walker's lies and deception were the genesis for this blog, to be honest.
Walker testifies to Congress he lied about
 his union-busting plans (2011)

In the meantime, true, there have been tax cuts (which studies have found did more harm than good), and lowered unemployment (which has traditionally trended lower than the US rate), but the cost has been high in other ways, too, for our state.

Environmentally, Walker and his forces began dismantling the incredible richness of our state's natural resources--by doing everything from prohibiting mentions of climate change to leading the DNR to alter conservation policies to favor corporate interests (the latest example from The Political Environment here).

Fiscally, Walker pushed policies that moved money from public to private education, inhibited much-needed infrastructure throughout the state, stopped the state from receiving federal funds to supplement Obamacare. His giveaways to major corporations (yes, including Foxconn) contained massive monies and concessions.

Morally, Walker and his forces reneged on an already completed deal for high-speed rail when he took office (which cost the state tens of millions of dollars and, in my opinion, a chance to move into the 21st Century), demonized public workers as "fat cats" living off the state (incorporating policies that will decimate public education--which I suspect was his plan all along), and never stood up to the hatred spewing from his conservative leader, Donald Trump.

So, it's about time that Walker's gone.

And good riddance for our wonderful state.


Tuesday, November 6, 2018

Into the Abyss...

Results of the midterms--in which there came no "blue wave"--are not merely disappointing. The results are not merely sad.

The results are terrifying.

With the success Republicans had nationally--especially those candidates that tied themselves closely to Trump-- they show that my fellow countrymen care more about fear than hope. They care more about selfish interests than compassion. They care more about a few extra dollars in their 401K than they care about honesty and decency.

The results embolden racists and misogynists and media-haters. They promote policies to continue destroying the environment and dismantling public education. These results ensure the continuation of the, yes, deplorable factor--including those evil trolls, including Republican officials and a President that still peddle (and believe) absurd and offensive conspiracy theories ranging from millions of illegal voters to Obama not being born in the US to Russia not interfering in the election to Democrats involved in massive pedophilia rings to the "red flags" of supposed Democrats setting up pipe bomb deliveries or the shooting in a Pittsburgh synagogue.

These results show our country's horribly dark side. We are travelling into an abyss.
Hopefully, we can come back up and out after the vileness of Donald Trump has run its course.

And if we don't, as a country, end up emerging from this terrible abyss, it will not be merely terrifying.

It will mean that the nightmare for our country--and for humanity--is just beginning.

May God have mercy on us.