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The Wisconsin legislature just brought the US within 6 states of req a new constitutional convention. Extremists in conservative-leaning states, w/backing from corporate front groups like ALEC, r pushing4 an Article V convention,
(Wednesday, Nov 8. 2017 05:20 PM)
at which delegates could try2 write far-right agenda into r Constitution. If these pass a vote by 3/4 of the states, not even SCOTUS could challenge them. A prime target is a woman’s right2 choose, but also various forms of birth control, gay rights, etc. We could even see slavery’s cousin “indentured servitude” & other “employer” abuses4 debtors/immigrants/prisoners. Oddly, r country could easily move towards non-secular rule much like we might see in Islamic countries. https://goo.gl/Y8XWuX
I wasn’t really proposing2 print money 4the masses so as 2give us all equal amts. But sometimes the inane extrapolation of an issue helps clarify one’s thought processes. What I was actually suggesting is that because
(Wednesday, Nov 8. 2017 06:37 AM)
lrg amts of money (often inherited or earned on the backs of others) is so often used2 create inequities in one’s ability to exercise free speech (that will be heard), the courts should retain some openness to preventing money alone from being used 2drown out opponent voices. Some rather innocuous approaches towards that goal involve public campaign financing & limits on monopolies, especially those involving the press.
Syria now says it will join the Paris climate agreement, leaving the US alone in rejecting the deal amongst almost 200 countries.
(Wednesday, Nov 8. 2017 06:24 AM)
An official in France’s Pres Emmanuel Macron’s office recently said Trump “for the time being” isn’t invited 2the Paris climate cg summit in Dec, though lower-level US officials will still be invited. https://goo.gl/ghuVhP
For Shade – Not thought provoking at all. Your rights don’t obligate others to act. Should everyone be given a printing press because there is freedom of the press? Should everyone be given a gun because of the 2nd amendment?
Despite feigning divestment 2become commerce secretary, leaked files from Appleby, a large offshore law firm, show Wilbur L Ross Jr retained investments in Navigator Holdings. Nav Holdings is a shipping firm Ross once controlled
(Sunday, Nov 5. 2017 04:43 PM)
that has sig ties 2a RU oligarch subject2 American sanctions (& who also happens 2b Putin’s son-in-law).
Leak shows how Appleby works 2help wealthy & corps like Apple/Nike avoid billions in taxes. Leak also shows there r
some 50 corps/partnerships Ross still inv with. In His ethics agreement, Ross listed the partnerships he intended 2keep, but not the investments they held. Leak also references Gary D Cohn, chief economic adviser & Sec of State Rex W. Tillerson, though per se their investments r not illegal. https://goo.gl/1S4UXF
8 million Jehovah’s witnesses don’t salute the flag. 200,000 Amish don’t stand for the national anthem. Some Quakers don’t recite the Pledge of Allegiance. One black man kneels respectfully and all hell breaks loose. Now you know why he’s kneeling. https://goo.gl/S4YDDF
SCOTUS has ruled that placing limits on election spending is unconstitutional because spending money is a form of free speech. Perhaps the ACLU should now make the case that if spending money equals free speech, the ppl need 2b granted free money so we can all exercise our right to free speech equally. It is a thought-provoking argument that I’m not sure SCOTUS idealogues ever considered. (credit to a PBC show caller)
A pricing oddity intro’d by Trump’s ACA meddling is that in some cases, it is now poss 2buy a more comprehensive Gold plan 4less than a Silver plan. This is true cuz under a T exec order, ins co(s) no longer recv govt CSR offsetting
(Saturday, Nov 4. 2017 04:50 AM)
subsidies on Silver plans (though they r still mandated 2provide lower deductibles/co-pays 2low-income ppl who buy them). Thus ins co(s) now face higher costs on Silver (espec in poor areas). In response, the price has been raised on Silver 4everyone. Usually, the price of Gold & other plans r unaffected, as only Silver offers low inc discounts & prev had CSR subsidies. Now depending on where u live, income level, & other factors, u might find a Gold plan costs less & buys more than a Silver plan.
Suspicions PG&E caused recent wine-country fires now pointing2 power-line devices called “reclosers”, which r self-resetting circuit breakers that shut off pwr briefly if wires touch in wind. We’ve all experienced “reclosers
(Saturday, Nov 4. 2017 02:44 AM)
in action after a nearby pole goes down. Lights go off/on/off/on & then hopefully stay on – which is great if there is no permanent condition. But if wires r downed/shorted, reclosers can cause fires/electrocutions. Other utility co(s) disable reclosers in severe fire conditions, but not PG&E. And PG&E had only $800M in liability insurance. I again smell something burning – it’s PG&E cash in a bankrupting lawsuit settlement (that ratepayers ultimately pay4). http://goo.gl/ecwJJo
A Twitter support employee on their last day of work managed2 deactivate T’s acct for 11 min b4 it got restored. Some have asked what would have happened if the employee had instead used T’s acct 2announce an eminent attack on NK?
(Saturday, Nov 4. 2017 12:54 AM)
Would NK then launched 1st? This incident alone shows there is good reason T should not be using the Twitter format 2announce foreign policy.
Dems should repeatedly point out that if the idea is to save American lives, instead of spending so much time demagoguing immigrants, T would be better asking for “increased vetting” of ppl that own an unusual number of guns or that buy extraordinary amts of ammo.
PR’s utility PREPA today canceled controversial contract with MT firm 2repair elect grid. However, Whitefish will be paid 2complete its work on 2 transmission lines. Turns out the Whitefish Energy contract had clause saying
(Sunday, Oct 29. 2017 05:36 PM)
pay rates & other terms couldnt be audited/reviewed by FEMA, PR, the comptroller general or PREPA. Contract also req that PREPA, before signing, had confirmed w/FEMA that contract would qualify4 FEMA funding. FEMA said Fri it never approved. PR will now req assist from FL & NY under mutual aid agreements that utilities more typically activate during an emergencies. Hopefully canceled contract doesnt intro further delays, though I fear it will. About 80% of ppl on PR’s main island still have no electricity. http://goo.gl/KfZzuE
At Thurs’ NFL owners meeting, Texans owner Bob McNair said of the protesting players “we can’t have inmates running the prison.” McNair’s enormously insensitive if not racist comment shows exactly why it is that that some
(Sunday, Oct 29. 2017 02:45 PM)
players r protesting. To refer 2players as inmates reveals how owners really feel – that Blk men belong under the thumb of Wht owners. McNair’s comments were so offensive, star wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins walked out of practice once he heard them. Now the whole team is said 2b planning a unified action against the team’s owner. The NFL (as with many lrg corporations), being so dependant on player talent, should be be forced by the players union 2gradually move towards player ownership.
T on Fri reversed course (again) on completely releasing all JFK assassination files & he now says he is authorizing the release of all info on the topic (other than4 redacting the names/addresses of ppl still living).
(Sunday, Oct 29. 2017 03:44 AM)
Earlier last wk, T had said the govt would be continuing 2 withhold 1000s of docs pending 6more mo of review by intel agencies 2ensure no sensitive info accidently gets released. I wonder what happened on Fri that might have moved up T’s timetable? T doesnt have any reason he might want 2create a major distraction in the press by releasing info that might be embarrassing 2r intell agencies does he? To me, T appears 2b trying to kill 2 birds w/one stone.
In RI, the state insurance marketplace announced an 18-20% increase in ACA premiums & dubbed it a “Trump tax.” T’s various admin actions, esp elimin of CSRs, have caused premiums 2rise on ACA Silver Plans an avg of 34% throughout the U.S. https://goo.gl/sEGBPv
Kaspersky Labs now claims 2have unintentionally obtained sensitive NSA hacking tools after a NSA contractor trig the AV 2upload suspicious files by use of a malware infected key gen 2pirate a copy of MS Office. KL claims
(Thursday, Oct 26. 2017 07:00 AM)
key gen installed backdoor & this allowed others 2download the NSA hacking tools. KL says they destroyed their copies of the hacking tools once they realized what they had obtained. Story a RU lie. If my AV co uploaded hacking tools from my HD, I’d expect them2 dev detection 2protect their customers, not 2delete the files – espec those from a rival country. Also, it is doubtful the backdoor op would detect NSA’s hacking tools; more likely they were scanning4 financial accts 2hack into. http://goo.gl/NSkSuY
With VP Pence breaking a 50-50 tie, Senate Repubs voted Tue 2strike down an Obama-era Consumer Financial Protection Bureau rule sched 2take effect in 2019 that blocked banks & credit-card corps like Wells Fargo
(Thursday, Oct 26. 2017 06:08 AM)
from inserting binding arbitration clauses into contracts that elimin a consumer’s right 2participate in class-action lawsuits. Binding arbitration is typically highly fav to corps as it forces ea consumer 2independently file their grievance w/ an arbitrator the corp picks. Somehow pro-consumer arbitrators never get called. Worse, when consumers lose the dispute, they often owe both the disputed amt & ~$7k 4the arbitrator’s services. http://goo.gl/cwvyqC
Per the CBO, the bipartisan hlth care bill by Sen Lamar Alexander (R-TN) & Patty Murray (D-WA) would reduce Fed deficit by nearly $4B over 10yrs. However, if insurer “cost-sharing reduction” (CSR) subsidies arent funded,
(Wednesday, Oct 25. 2017 11:09 PM)
the Fed deficit would increase by $194B by 2026. The CBO said today that the bill would not substantially impact the # of ppl w/hlth ins. In a related story, Judge Vince Chhabria in SF, CA rejected a req by Dem AG’s in 18states 2block T’s decision 2end these same CSR subsidies2 hlth insurers (paid in exchange4 insurers reducing out-of-pocket expenses2 low-inc ACA enrollees). The judge said govt doesnt pay the CSRs while litigation on the issue continues. The pymts were prev admin distro’d by the executive branch but never codified into law. https://goo.gl/ftymYZ
Rick Perry claims Obama discriminated against coal & nuke fueled power plants & he has proposed rewarding electricity producers that store 90days of their fuel on site cuz they contribute 2the reliability of
(Wednesday, Oct 25. 2017 10:14 PM)
the power grid. Of course, this favors coal & nuke electricity producers & discriminates against nat gas plants & most renewables. Gas is not practical 2store on site & wind/solar cant be stored, though the mix of these sources has proven highly reliable. Nat gas, renewable generators, & utility companies have asked regulators 2reject Perry’s proposal, arguing it would distort markets, inhibit competition, & raise electricity prices. https://goo.gl/bi22Aw