Closing Thought–08Mar17

Live And Let Die–Russian Style

Has anyone else noticed the amount of people around Putin that have died?

There was the dude in London about 10 years ago….then a political opponent was shot dead in Moscow….an associate of Putin died in DC and then there was the political opponent that has been poisoned for the second time….there have been many people drop dead around the Russian…..

When Vitaly Churkin, Russia’s top United Nations envoy, collapsed suddenly from an apparent heart failure recently, it triggered widespread and predictable murmuring about possible foul play. With so many sudden and mysterious deaths at the upper levels of the Russosphere during the Putin years, chiefly among his opponents, it’s no surprise that rumors abound even when a stalwart loyalist like Churkin dies. The actual causes of many of the untimely deaths, like those of Alexander Litvinenko and Boris Nemtsov cases, however, have been considerably less mysterious. Clear assassinations of that kind naturally leave a cloud of suspicion over seemingly innocent but abrupt deaths—and, there have been an inordinate number. Indeed, I noted in a recent column that five prominent Kremlin-linked deaths have occurred in the UK—including Litvinenko, and Alexander Perepilichny whose demise seemed inexplicable until a mysterious Himalayan poison was found in his stomach tissue as this article in The Atlantic explains. All of this might also explain why former MI6 agent Christopher Steele, compiler of the notorious Trump ‘dossier’, went underground in his own country.

Source: Mysterious Circumstances Surrounding Russian Murders, Deaths | World Affairs Journal

I am waging that these will not be the last to expire around Mr. Putin.

Day is done…I am off to see the wizard….have day and see ya tomorrow….chuq

After I wrote this draft more news about deaths has come to the top……

Conspiracy theorists have pointed to a number of recent deaths of Russian diplomats in the past four months.

Russia’s permanent ambassador to the UN, Vitaly Churkin, died last month in New York after suddenly becoming ill on his way to work the day before his 65th birthday.

It was initially reported he had suffered a heart attack but an autopsy proved inconclusive.

The Russian Consul in Athens, Andrei Malanin, 55, was found dead on the floor of his apartment in Greece in January. Greek police said there was no evidence of a break-in and he was believed to have died of natural causes.

Russia’s Ambassador to India, Alexander Kadakin, 67, was reported to have died of heart failure in January after a “brief illness” according to Indian media.

Russian diplomat Sergei Krivov, 63, was found unconscious having suffered severe head injuries at the Russian consulate in New York on US election day.

The Russian ambassador to Turkey, Andrei Karlov, was assassinated in Ankara by a policeman at a photography exhibition on 19 December and another diplomat, Peter Polshikov, was shot dead in his Moscow apartment on the same day.

Former KGB chief Oleg Erovinkin, who was suspected of helping British spy Christopher Steele draft a dossier on Donald Trump, was found dead in the back of his car last Boxing Day.

(the independent)

Russians are dropping like flies…..

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Does Anyone Know What It Says?

Remember the Muslim Ban?

Everyone has an opinion whether it is good or bad….even though the first EO was whacked on the pee pee we have a new one…..the updated version…..I waited a couple of days to see what the chatter would be all about…..

The White House is rolling out its new travel ban after the first one got hung up in the courts. The big difference, as expected, is that Iraq is no longer on the banned list after promising to beef up screening, reports the AP. That leaves six Muslim-majority nations: Syria, Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, and Yemen. The new directive, scheduled to take effect March 16, will prohibit new visas from being issued to travelers from those nations for 90 days, but those with current visas won’t be affected. The revised order generally makes more exceptions than the first one, notes the Washington Post, including for those who are permanent legal residents of the US. President Trump signed it Monday, though not in a public ceremony as with the first.

“If you have travel docs, if you actually have a visa, if you are a legal permanent resident, you are not covered under this particular executive action,” adviser Kellyanne Conway told Fox News on Monday, per CNN. The order also will suspend the nation’s refugee program for 120 days, making exceptions for those already cleared, and it will cap the total number of refugees at 50,000 for fiscal 2017, down about half from last year. So will the narrower scope appease critics? Early reaction suggests not. “The president has said he would ban Muslims, and this revised version—in these preliminary fact sheets—still does that, even if they have removed Iraq from the list,” says the director of advocacy for the American Immigration Lawyers Association.

People will debate and argue but really how many know what the EO states?

My guess is….very few…..but I can help with that…..Want to know the difference between Trump’s last executive order and his latest? Data visualization specialist and longtime friend of Just Security, John Emerson, gave us this line-by-line comparison of the two documents. Anything in red is text that was cut from the original order. Anything marked green is new material while white is unchanged text.

Source: A Line-by-Line Comparison Between Trump’s Original Muslim Ban and Today’s | Just Security

The problem is that few see the benefit from this ban…even the American Conservative does not see the need……

Benjamin Wittes acknowledges that the Trump administration made a number of important concessions in its revised travel ban order, but still says this:

To be sure, the new version of the executive order will have consequences—all of them bad. It will keep large numbers of people from six countries out of the United States for no good reason [bold mine-DL]. It will delay resettlement of large numbers of refugees and prevent altogether resettlement in the United States of a smaller number of refugees. As with the earlier version of the executive order, the overwhelming majority of people affected by this one will not be terrorists or even people against whom there is whiff of suspicion. The overwhelming majority of those affected, rather, will be innocent victims of horrific violence and folks who just want to come to the United States for reasons of tourism or business [bold mine-DL]. It’s terrible policy that

Source: The U.S. Doesn’t Benefit from the Revised Ban | The American Conservative

Now go ahead…..debate your butts off!

You Can Put Lipstick On A Pig

But after all that it will always be a….PIG.

Repeal and replace……Repeal and replace…..and the peasants chanted and chanted….

Repeal and replace was a promise that Trump made to his slobbering throngs of worshipers….and now that he has been elected to the Casa Blanca and the GOP after jerking off for a weeks has come up with a plan…..and as always I had a post about the replacement as soon as I heard about it…..in real life, after the lies are removed, millions may lose coverage and taxes will rise…..

The GOP has tried to keep their new plan a secret for as long as possible…..but even with that game going on there seems to be a bit of a push back against the new GOP health care plan…..I bet you think it is those pesky Dems or liberals or whatever title you want to throw…..but guess what?  You would be wrong!

The opposition this time goes from moderates and “real” conservatives…….

House Republicans rolled out their plan for replacing ObamaCare on Monday—but the “American Health Care Act” may not be much more popular with some GOP lawmakers than the Affordable Care Act before it. House conservatives haven’t committed to backing the plan yet, Politico reports, and four GOP senators from states that expanded Medicaid under ObamaCare released a letter Monday expressing concern that the plan to repeal expansion after 2020 could lead to a “reduction in access to life-saving health care services” and saying they would not support a “plan that does not include stability for Medicaid expansion populations.” A roundup of coverage:

  • This is the GOP’s best shot yet at translating talk about repeal and replace into action, the Washington Post reports in a look at the plan’s details, but the party faces a tough balancing act trying to please lawmakers worried about making entitlements permanent at the same time as those worried about people losing coverage.
  • The Hill reports that the House plan drops most of the taxes associated with ObamaCare, but keeps the “Cadillac” tax on the more expensive health plans. In a move that does not sit well with some conservatives, the tax will kick in after 2025.
  • Breitbart reports that conservative columnist Charles Krauthammer says more radical conservatives “are going to have to fall on their swords” over the plan. They’re “going to have to concede the fact that Obama created an entitlement,” he said on Fox, and trying to eliminate it “would destroy the presidency.”
  • Critics say the biggest problem with the plan is that it appears certain to result in millions of people losing coverage, despite President Trump’s assurances, CNN reports. “With Medicaid reductions and smaller tax credits, this bill would clearly result in fewer people insured than under the ACA,” says Larry Levitt at the Kaiser Family Foundation. “The House GOP proposal seeks to reduce what the federal government spends on health care, and that inevitably means more people uninsured.”
  • Slate describes the GOP plan as “hard to assess,” since it “does not include a price tag or an estimate of how many Americans the plan will actually cover.”
  • Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer was among Democrats who criticized the plan, saying “TrumpCare doesn’t replace the Affordable Care Act, it forces millions of Americans to pay more for less care,” Reuters reports.
  • Sen. Rand Paul tweeted that he hadn’t seen “an official version of the House Obamacare replacement bill, but from media reports this sure looks like Obamacare Lite!”
  • Forbes finds plenty of “transformative and consequential reforms” to praise, but concludes that there is no escaping the fact that it will “make coverage unaffordable for millions.”

Even Trump’s brain, Breibart, is not thrilled with the GOP’s new plan….

Will the GOP actually be part of the solution for ending this abortion of the Trump administration?  Four major GOPers have broken with Ryan and Trump on this issue……

The plan to repeal the Affordable Care Act hit a new, unexpected roadblock yesterday. The release of the bills drafted in two different House committees finally provided a few details for the plan Republicans will offer to replace the healthcare program started under the Obama administration.

Shortly afterward, Republican Senators Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV), Cory Gardner (R-CO), Lisa Murkowski (R-AL), and Rob Portman (R-OH) released a letter to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell stating “the February 10th draft proposal from the House does not meet the test of stability for individuals currently enrolled in the program and we will not support a plan that does not include stability for Medicaid expansion populations or flexibility for states.” The senators join the ranks of a wide variety of constituents and groups opposed to the plan.

Opposition from more than two GOP senators could jeopardize the bill’s future in the Senate, where Republicans hold a 52-48 majority. Because the repeal of the ACA based on a budgetary maneuver still requires a majority vote by the Senate, the GOP will need to persuade at least two of these senators to go along with the bill.

(second nexus)

I need to correct one thing…..Lisa Murkowski is from Alaska (AK) not Alabama (AL)…….

Will it be back to the drawing board…..yet again?

It is not all that complicated……as Trump has said…it is simple…..

Source: Medicare for All: Home

Yes, that f*cking simple with no complications…..

Who’s Afraid Of The Big Bad Wolf?

They have always been there….hiding in the shadows and popping up from time to time to throw out their bigoted mindset then slink back into the shadows….that is until 2016….the alt-Right, what they are calling themselves now so not to be confused with the GOP……has gotten the major toe hold they have been searching for for the last 100 years…….they even have their people in key positions within the government of the US.

Many Americans, contrary to popular belief, are worried about the rise of these “people”….to many these “people” are threatening……but why do these people feel so threatened?

Even in today’s acrimonious political landscape, nothing seems to draw as much vitriol as the minuscule “Alt-Right” (shorthand for an alternative to mainstream Conservatism Inc.). Indeed, if America’s political class organized 1984-style two-minute hates, the Alt-Right would be the star of the show with Richard Spencer substituting for Emmanuel Goldstein.

Given this aversion across the ideological spectrum, one might surmise that the Alt-Right embraced doctrines totally antithetical to core American values. Not quite. In at least in one key regard, the Alt-Right is as American as apple pie.

This apparent oddity flows from the movement’s paramount goal: preserving United States as a white ethno state, a nation with shared heritage, a single language and common biological ancestry. Ironically given the accusations of Alt-Right anti-Semitism, Israel with its total commitment to its Jewish identity is often heralded as the model for such a state.

Source: Why is the Alt-Right So Threatening? – The Unz Review

Yes Irene there are those that see creeping authoritarianism as a problem that needs to be stopped…..and there are those that say this situation could not happen here in the good old US of A…..

Donald Trump’s candidacy and now, presidency, have resurrected a public discourse not heard in this country since the Great Depression — an anxious discourse about the possible triumph in America of a fascist-tinged authoritarian regime over liberal democracy. It’s a fear Sinclair Lewis turned into a 1935 bestselling novel, It Can’t Happen Here — although, as Lewis told it, it sure as hell could happen here.

It did not happen, however. Not then, at least. Electing Franklin Roosevelt as president and taking up the labors of the New Deal, our parents and grandparents not only rejected the sirens of authoritarianism, they actually extended and deepened American freedom, equality and democracy. They subjected big business to public account and regulation; expanded the nation’s public infrastructure and improved the environment; empowered the federal government to address the needs of working people and the poor; mobilized farmers’ organizations, labor unions, consumer campaigns and civil rights groups and fought for their rights, broadening the “We” in “We the People.”

Source: Who Says It Can’t Happen Here? | By Harvey Kaye | Common Dreams

It is all part of a plot by the Ignorati.

Okay here is a good place for some replies from my readers….I feel that they are aware of the situation and have some amazing opinions….please share…..

A “Limited Nuke War”

This is not a subject that I would ever want to debate again….but that wish has been crapped on….and crapped on hard.

The prospect of a nuclear conflict has recently raised its ugly head…..for years this was not a subject that got much press…but in the last year the idea seems to making a comeback of sorts….

Since the day that our new president took the oath of office this is a subject that has garnered more press than any of the previous years….Trump has made it clear that he would like a nuclear arsenal upgrade.

With that said the whole scenario of a “limited nuclear war” has once again made the headlines (and you thought the Cold War was over…HA)….

The blog of the National Interest magazine has taken a look at the aging paradigm……

As Donald Trump’s first three weeks in office come to a close, critics are pointing out that his iconic slogan, “Make America Great Again” is starting to look more and more like an attempt to bring American society back to the 1950s. What most people haven’t realized yet is that his vision of turning back the clock also applies to America’s nuclear arsenal.

Just this past week, CQ Roll Call reported that a blue-ribbon Pentagon panel urged the Trump administration to make the U.S. arsenal more capable of fighting a “‘limited’ atomic war.”

Source: Could America Really Win a “Limited” Nuclear War? | The National Interest Blog

Carter and even Reagan worked to limit these destructive tools….and now after 30+ years of working to their elimination the whole idea has come roaring back into the conversation of conflict management and resolution…..

We can only hope that sanity returns to the world of foreign policy….if not then we might as well get use to those silly drills of hiding under the desk with our hands over our head.

Personally I was hoping that this would go away and sane people were in control….my hopes are dashed on the rocks of insanity.