Those Segregationists

Closing Thought–28Jun19

Biden has been trying to walk back his claims of working with segregationists like Eastland of Mississippi and Thurmond of South Carolina…..

Joe Biden is sticking to his guns amid heavy criticism for his remarks about working with Southern segregationist senators. Asked Wednesday if he was planning to apologize for his comments on the “civility” involved in working with the racist Democratic senators in the ’70s and ’80s, Biden said “Apologize for what?” “There’s not a racist bone in my body,” he said, per the Hill. “I’ve been involved in civil rights my whole career. Period. Period. Period.” Biden, speaking outside a fundraiser in Maryland, said Sen. Cory Booker, one of the Democratic rivals saying he should apologize for his remarks about Sens. James Eastland and Herman Talmadge, is the one who should apologize to him, reports NBC.

At the fundraiser, Biden stressed that he and Ted Kennedy had “detested” what the Southern senators stood for, but they achieved their goal of extending the Voting Rights Act, Politico reports. “We had to put up with the likes of … Jim Eastland and Hermy Talmadge and all those segregationists and all of that,” he said. “And the fact of the matter is that we were able to do it because we were able to win—we were able to beat them on everything they stood for.” Booker told CNN Wednesday night that he was surprised by Biden’s failure to apologize. “For someone to show the lack of understanding or sensitivity to even know when they’ve made a mistake and to fall into that kind of defensive posture—that I should apologize to him is really problematic,” he said

But these days how many people understand what is a segregationist or who they were….one of the biggest was Strom Thurmond…..and here is his bio…..

Strom Thurmond was a segregationist politician who ran for president in 1948 on a platform opposed to civil rights for African Americans. He later served 48 years—an astonishing eight terms—as a U.S. Senator from South Carolina. In the later decades of his career, Thurmond obscured his views on race by claiming that he had only ever been opposed to excessive federal power.

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Dem Debate–Part Two

Last night was the final 10 candidate debate…this is the night for the Dem Big Guns…..Biden, Mayor Pete, Bernie….as usual I will give the take from the media and then I shall give my take on the debate.

Night at the circus…..

Ten more Democrats vying to take on President Trump clashed in a fiesty debate in Miami Thursday night. The second night of Democratic debates included frontrunner Joe Biden and fellow high-polling candidates Bernie Sanders, Kamala Harris, and Pete Buttigieg. Andrew Yang, Kirsten Gillibrand, Marianne Williamson, John Hickenlooper, Eric Swalwell, and Michael Bennett were also onstage, looking for a chance to raise their profiles. More:

  • Sanders acknowledged that his plan to expand government services would result in tax hikes for the middle class, but he said people would still be better off, the Washington Post reports. “Yes, they will pay more in taxes but less in health care,” he said.
  • Biden got an early shot in at Trump, the Hill reports. Less than five minutes in, the former vice president said: “Donald Trump thinks Wall Street built America. Ordinary middle-class Americans built America.”
  • Hickenlooper clashed with Sanders on socialism, arguing that the label could doom Democrats to defeat. “The bottom line is, if we don’t clearly define that we are not socialists, the Republicans are going to come at us every way they can and call us socialists,” he said.
  • The 38-year-old Swalwell made the 76-year-old Biden’s age an issue, saying Biden was right 32 years ago when he said it was “time to pass the torch to a new generation of Americans,” the AP reports. As Sanders and other candidates chimed in, Harris interjected: “Hey guys. You wanna know what America does not want to witness, a food fight. They want to know how they’re going to put food on the table.”
  • As happened Wednesday night, the candidates were asked if they supported abolishing private health care in favor of a government-run program. Sanders and Harris were the only ones to raise their hands. Sanders spoke passionately about his Medicare for all plan, but didn’t answer a question on how much it would cost.
  • Some candidates brought up their own stories when talking about health care: Biden spoke of the death of his first wife, baby daughter, and adult son, while Buttigieg discussed the death of his father earlier this year.
  • In another show-of-hands question, all 10 candidates supporting providing health care to undocumented immigrants, the Guardian reports. Buttigieg argued that immigrants, even undocumented ones, pay taxes and are part of society. Trump tweeted: “How about taking care of American Citizens first!? That’s the end of that race!”
  • On immigration, Biden said he would invest in Central America, while Sanders said he would repeal “every damn thing” Trump has done on immigration, the AP reports. Harris said that on her first day in office, she would help people brought to the US illegally become citizens. Asked if they would make crossing the border illegally a civil offense, not a criminal one, Bennett was the only candidate not to raise his hand.
  • Yang and Bennett were among those to speak about the threat from Russia and China. Russia is “our greatest geopolitical threat because they’ve been hacking our democracy successfully,” Yang said.
  • On racism, Buttigieg said he couldn’t go into detail about the recent police shooting of a black man in South Bend, Indiana, where he is mayor, but he said systemic racism was the problem.
  • In one of the debate’s biggest moments, Harris—saying “As the only African-American on stage, I would like to speak”—targeted Biden’s record on racial issues, saying it was hurtful to hear him talk about working with segregationist lawmakers, the Guardian reports. She also brought up his opposition to busing to end school segregation.
  • On abortion rights, Sanders promised: “My litmus test is I will never nominate any justice to the Supreme Court unless it is 100% that he or she will defend Roe v. Wade.”
  • Asked about climate change, Biden promised to fund billions in scientific research to deal with the crisis, adding that he has dealmaking experience that other candidates lack, reports the Post.
  • Asked for one or two-word answers on what their first priority would be, most candidates completely ignored the world limit. Gillibrand spoke of a “family bill of rights,” Sanders called for a “political revolution,” while Williamson said she would call New Zealand’s prime minister to say that America is now the best place in the world to bring up a child.
  • The candidates agreed on the need for gun control but not on specific measures, the AP reports. “Keep your pistols, keep your rifles, keep your shotguns,” said Swalwell, calling for an assault weapon buyback. “But we can take the most dangerous weapons from the most dangerous people.”
  • Biden said that when he was in government, he helped bring 100,000 troops, including his son, back from Iraq. Sanders reminded viewers that, unlike him, Biden voted to authorize military action.
  • In closing remarks, Biden said: “It’s important to restore the soul of this nation. The president has ripped it out.” Gillibrand said: “Women in America are on fire, but our rights are under attack. I will take on the fights no one else will.” Hickenlooper criticized socialism again, while Harris promised to lead with dignity and honesty. politics isn’t theoretical for me. Sanders vowed to take on Wall Street and Buttigieg said: “I’m in a marriage that exists by a single vote on the Supreme Court, I fought in Iraq.”

That is what the media has to say about the night in Miami…but let’s look a bit deeper….

Most analysts agree that the subdued Biden, whose commanding lead in the polls ensured he would be a target, did not have a great night. Beyond the exchange with Harris, he was criticized by Bernie Sanders for his vote authorizing military action in Iraq, and may have irked Democratic voters by declaring that the NRA was “not the enemy.” “Biden was not dominant at any point, though he spent much of the debate trying to placate progressives who will be vital in the primary,” writes Niall Stanage at the Hill.

Something that was missing in the first night was on and in force…attacks on Trump……he and his policies were attacked on almost minute by minute…..

My take on the “debate”…..Americans need a winner…..last night was Harris won the night hands down…..she did what needed doing to break into the top 5 to stay…..her responses were measured and calculated….especially against Biden.

Bernie was Bernie.

Biden looked his age….and to me out of touch trying to retain that middle ground spot.

The real losers of the debate was everyone on that stage that was not named Harris…..and in the long run the American voter.

This was NOT a debate!

When a candidate gets 60 seconds to attack complex issues like health care for all is silly and this whole thing should be abandoned and abandoned soon.

Swalwell, Sen. Michael Bennet, former Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper, entrepreneur Andrew Yang, and self-help author Marianne Williamson, largely failed to get the breakout moments they may have been hoping for. Yang had the least speaking time of any candidate, with just under three minutes, reports the New York Times. Williamson was, however, the most-searched for candidate on Google during the debate after lines like “I’m going to harness love for political purposes” went viral, Politico reports

The night that all political junkies were waiting for and came away still wanting.

Let The Spin Begin!

Look for the drop outs to start soon. (Post to come)

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Where’s Jimmy?

Many of the fights Dems are having these days were policies that Jimmy championed and never could get a deal through Congress.

This Jimmy is President Jimmy Carter…..the GOP’s favorite to blame everything bad on that is until the election of Obama and then he got their ire.

Carter was the last time I voted for a winner in a presidential election…..I liked many of his policies….his ideas on jobs, mortgages, foreign policy and so on…..then there were some ideas that are still being tried to get those elected and never come to be……

¶An end to the practice of appointing some ambassadors for political reasons or as a reward for campaign contributions.

¶Calling a meeting this fall of Congressional leaders and others to discuss the development of a more effective “bipartisan” foreign policy.

¶Making the term of the chairman of the Federal Reserve Board “coterminous” with that of the President to encourage greater harmony between the board’s monetary policies and the White House’s economic strategy.

¶Making the office of Attorney General a “nonpolitical” appointment for a term of six years, presumably isolated in considerable degree from White House pressures. This is probably a long‐range project.

¶The proposal of a national “sunshine” law to open more Government and legislative processes to public scrutiny and observation.

Does any of those policies sound a bit familiar?

But take a look at the issues that faced Carter and how he did……

Many of his policies like the environment and foreign policy….could have prevented the crap we face today……just my opinion.  I felt so strongly about Crater’s proposals that I voted for him in 1980….of course we both lost out to mad man Reagan.

I agree that the Carter presidency was a failed revolution in American foreign policy……

US President Jimmy Carter took office in 1977, armed with a set of liberal ideals and aspirations that he believed would revolutionise American foreign policy. Carter had strong convictions that it was timely to initiate overhauling reforms in the country’s foreign policy by advancing human rights globally and pursuing a policy of arms restraint. During the onset of his regime, many administrations in the global landscape were dictatorships that committed human rights violations and were hungry for advanced armaments the US could offer. Carter meant to resolve this situation by infusing humanitarian concerns into the US foreign policy and implementing reprisals against governments that engaged in human rights abuses. Another ideal Carter romanticised about was disarmament, reduction of arms sales overseas (especially to none NATO nations), and non-proliferation of nuclear weapons. Going as far as making the sales of arms to foreign nations something that was done on an ad hoc basis. Carter believed that the time had come for the United States to move past Cold-War tensions and alter the US’s approach to containment in spite of Soviet determination to proliferate communist ideology on a global scale. As noble as they were, in practice Carter’s ideals crumbled due to his double-mindedness and want to compromise to please multiple parties. His liberal policies such as advancing human rights, democracy and education globally crumbled against an embedded strategic realpolitik policy set of deeply embedded policy packages, such as the Nixon administration’s policy of arming the Shah. This caused Carter to cave to the pressure of grander Cold War containment policy, which underpinned US foreign policy during the Cold War.

Jimmy Carter’s Liberalism: A Failed Revolution of U.S. Foreign Policy?

Another reason that I still like Carter is that he like Truman did not try to profit off their presidency……Harry Truman was Carter’s favorite President. Carter told The Guardian in 2011 that he admired Truman for not trying to profit off his presidency.

A man of principles….something seriously lacking in our present day politicians.  The only time they show a spine is when they have nothing to lose for their stance…like re-election.

We need a “man” of principles again.

Afghanistan–Exit Stage Right

I have been writing about our intervention of Afghanistan since 2005……I understand the 2001 attacks…it was to punish those that killed many Americans…..but to remain 17 more years was just lunacy…..

There have been talks with the Taleban lately trying to find a way out of Afghanistan for American troops…..and it looks like these talks may have been successful at least according to Pompeo…..

During a surprise visit to Kabul, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo confirmed that the US is prepared to remove its troops from Afghanistan, ending 18+ years of military presence in the country.

Pompeo says that the US has “made clear to the Taliban” that they are prepared for such a pullout, but said the two sides still have not agreed on a timeline for the exact withdrawal.

This echoes what the Taliban was saying last week, ahead of the Doha talks, which oddly US officials contested at the time. The Doha talks are meant to shore up an exact date for the US exit.

This has been the broad framework of a deal reported for months, that the US would leave and the Taliban would keep ISIS and al-Qaeda out of Afghanistan. Other aspects of the final deal, including a permanent ceasefire and reconciliation between the Taliban and the US-backed government, are expected to come later.


Wait!  Is this an exit strategy?

In talking up how ready he was for an Iran war, Trump dismissed questions about what his exit strategy would be, declaring “I don’t need exit strategies” to a gathering of reporters. He did not elaborate on what that actually meant.

Is that just for Iran?

What a dynamite diplomatic ploy dazzle them with confusion and baffle them with Twitter.