Thought Chasm these posts, while infrequent and poorly thought out, are also not all that complex, structurally.

‘So-Called’

This is no little thing. Describing Mar-a-Lago in a news article as “the so-called Winter White House” is normalizing out and out corruption — Trump’s shameless profiteering of the presidency.

If the Times wants to quote Trump using the phrase, so be it. But the description should never be used in news copy. The New York Times has no more reason to describe Mar-a-Lago as “the Winter White House” than they do to refer to their own publication as “the failing New York Times”.

With reporting on Russian oligarchs and Venezuelan and Peruvian authoritarianism, it seems easy to call that out as power mongering and affronts to democracy. Odd that a president can make money off hosting foreign leaders, give his kids high-ranking and ill-defined positions of power that will easily lead to profit, and give his sycophants similar positions they are incredibly unqualified for.

More odd that we seem to want to normalize it rather than call it what it is.

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Posted in media, quick thoughts, wtf??

Paul Ryan, Brought Down to Size

“In the 25 years that I served in the United States Congress,” Mr. Boehner said, “Republicans never, ever, one time agreed on what a health care proposal should look like. Not once. And all this happy talk that went on in November and December and January about repeal, repeal, repeal — yeah, we’ll do replace, replace — I started laughing.”

We might thank Mr. Ryan for one thing. His dreadful legislation drove voters of both parties to flood town halls and the Capitol, demanding that Congress reject the bill.

So at a time when many were beginning to question the vitality of American democracy, Mr. Ryan’s failure showed Americans that our system works.

While the TC staff was on edge all of Friday, after the non-vote, there was a little disappointment. If it had come to a vote, it would have been a pile of burning feces. Now it’s just an embarrassment that both parties can mostly ignore after the hubbub dies off.

The staff drank away the disappointment and then laid about hungover all Sunday and now we’re good to go for the next round.

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Posted in haha, politicish, quick thoughts, wtf??

Trading Health Care for the Poor for Tax Cuts for the Rich

Well, whether Mr. Price wants to believe it or not, the numbers are the numbers. The C.B.O. has called it as it sees it, and the picture is clear: Trumpcare would throw millions of Americans off their health coverage. And no amount of spin or scorn for the C.B.O. can alter that reality.

Sigh.

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Posted in politicish, quick thoughts, wtf??

Did Ben Carson Liken Slavery to Immigration?

That’s what America is about. A land of dreams and opportunity. There were other immigrants who came here in the bottom of slave ships, worked even longer, even harder for less. But they, too, had a dream that one day their sons, daughters, grandsons, granddaughters, great-grandsons, great-granddaughters might pursue prosperity and happiness in this land.

His own words in his own defense:

I think people need to actually look up the word immigrant. Whether you’re voluntary or involuntary, if you come from the outside to the inside, you’re an immigrant. Whether you’re legal or illegal, you come from the outside to inside, you’re an immigrant. Slaves came here as involuntary immigrants but they still had the strength to hold on.

In an interesting parallel, trump’s family immigrated (in a way more closely related to the real definition than this idiot tries to contend) after begging not to be deported. The more you know.

But back to Mr Carson, here’s another fun definition for today: Kakistocracy.

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Posted in politicish, quick thoughts, wtf??

The ridiculous gushing over Trump’s speech

The most absurd statistic he cited was the 94 million people out of the labor force, a rhetorical sleight-of-hand that suggests a catastrophically-high unemployment rate. That number includes 44 million retirees, 13 million students, and millions more who have no interest in getting a job. The real unemployment rate stands at just 4.8 percent, a historically low figure delivered by Trump’s predecessor, President Barack Obama.

It’s certainly true that the speech was better than most of his and that he has set an embarrassingly low bar for being palatable as a politician, but here’s where we differ: I say we get those lazy bastard retirees back to work.

There are enough ‘Boomers around to mess up even more of the future (mostly in congress) and I say we make them sit in the pile of feces they created as long as they’re around to enjoy it. Retirement is for the weak. Make America great again.

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Posted in haha, politicish, quick thoughts, wtf??

Death and Tax Cuts

So why do Republicans hate Obamacare so much? It’s not because they have better ideas; as we’ve seen over the past few weeks, they’re coming up empty-handed on the “replace” part of “repeal and replace.” It’s not, I’m sorry to say, because they are deeply committed to Americans’ right to buy the insurance policy of their choice.

No, mainly they hate Obamacare for two reasons: It demonstrates that the government can make people’s lives better, and it’s paid for in large part with taxes on the wealthy. Their overriding goal is to make those taxes go away. And if getting those taxes cut means that quite a few people end up dying, remember: freedom!

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Posted in politicish, quick thoughts, wtf??

John Boehner told Republicans some inconvenient truths on Obamacare

And this is where the 2012-versus-2016 distinction becomes so important. A party that doesn’t have a health care plan might be able to repeal Obamacare before it exists — in that case, you’re simply replacing the status quo with the status quo. But it can’t repeal Obamacare after it exists, because that would mean replacing the status quo with complete chaos.

And no one would want to introduce chaos, right? right? wait… right?

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Posted in politicish, quick thoughts

Trump vs. the Very Fake News Media

My fellow Americans, we are and always will be a nation of immigrants. We were strangers once, too.

—Barack Obama

Well, I don’t know, I was given that information. I was given—I actually, I’ve seen that information around. … Number one, I am the least anti-Semitic person that you’ve ever seen in your entire life. Number two, racism, the least racist person.

—donald trump

The parallels are striking.

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Posted in haha, politicish, wtf??

“We should not — and cannot — trust this man.” A CIA vet on Trump’s feud with US spies.

The only thing you can do is what is now happening: an aroused populace can protect democracy. You fight darkness by casting light upon it. So one should not characterize leaks, as the cowardly and self-interested Republicans have, as the issue. Leaks are the only option that one has in this existential crisis to protect the Constitution.

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Posted in politicish, quick thoughts

Trump finds the limits of executive power

If he is right, then he has only one option — rescind the order, start from scratch … write a new order that will both protect the security of the United States and avoid constitutional challenge.”

Dershowitz added: “But it would require him to admit that he is wrong. So now there is a clash between the ego of the President and the national security of the United States.”

There are few presidents in the history of our country that would find more difficulty in deciding these two courses of action. And there is probably only one that is likely to make the wrong choice. Unfortunate, then, that that rare person is currently the president, right?

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Posted in politicish, quick thoughts

A Good Idea, Even if It’s From Republicans

It’s a win-win: Less carbon in the atmosphere, and more equal distribution of income.

That it’s being proposed by Republicans doesn’t make the idea any less worthy.

I’m aware that some on the left would rather use revenues from such a tax to invest in clean energy and other social causes rather than return the revenues directly to the public. That detail can be worked out.

The idea is getting a hearing in the White House. And in these dreadful times, that’s good news indeed.

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Posted in quick thoughts