Showing posts with label Federalism. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Federalism. Show all posts

Monday, July 27, 2020

Don't Plant Those Seeds


If you receive a bag of seeds in the mail from China, tell your local officials and don't bother trying to inform our incompetent Trump-run government about it:

Officials in at least four states are urging residents to report any unsolicited packages of seeds that appear to have been sent from China, warning that they might be invasive or otherwise harmful.
The agriculture departments in Washington State, Louisiana, Kansas and Virginia have issued statements in recent days, noting that residents had reported receiving packages of seeds in the mail that they had not ordered. Based on photos, the seeds appear to have been mailed in white pouches displaying Chinese lettering and the words “China Post.”Some of the packages were labeled to say they contained jewelry, according to the Kansas Department of Agriculture.
Packages of seeds have also been sent to residents in Utah, Arizona and Ohio, according to local news reports.

What's a Trump regime official or potentate or acting deputy vice chairman going to do about it?

Seriously, this is probably just an effort by a Chinese company to distribute their product illegally. It's  likely nothing nefarious beyond that. But we don't have a State Department. We don't have a functioning set of agencies that could respond. We have screaming, diaper-clad toddlers working for the ultimate fool who could easily screw up a one car parade.

In other words, if this happens to you, the Federal government is going to be of no use in helping to deal with the problem the way that it would have in decades past. And I think people all over the world are beginning to realize that they can exploit the inherent stupidity in Trump voters and get them to work against American interests and their own economic self-interests. I'm not going to be surprised when the Chinese start sending AK-47s and poison to individual Americans, and that's probably the next thing that's coming in the mail.


Tuesday, July 14, 2020

What is an Employee?


This is a really interesting development in the debate over who is considered an "employee" and who is considered an expendable, disposable human being:
Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey announced Tuesday that she would file a lawsuit against Uber and Lyft, claiming that the companies have been improperly misclassifying their drivers as contractors rather than employees to save millions of dollars in compensation.
“We’re suing because these companies have built their billion-dollar business that misclassifies their drivers as contractors,” she said during a morning news conference conducted on Zoom.

The complaint, seeking a declaratory judgment, was submitted to Massachusetts Superior Court in Suffolk County.
Healey said that these companies do not pay unemployment or workers' compensation benefits, helping them save millions of dollars annually.
“Taxpayers and other companies are essentially paying when Uber and Lyft misclassifies workers,” she said. “The bottom line is that Uber and Lyft have gotten a free ride for far too long.”
 If you're barely paying people a living wage and sticking taxpayers with the cost of providing health care, unemployment insurance, and workers compensation then you're an evil corporation. Wal-Mart, for example, has always deliberately underpaid their workers and skated by on the idea that SNAP benefits will be there to bridge the gap between extreme poverty and starvation.

A fundamental redesign of the system of work starts with deciding who gets to be a worker and who gets to profit from that work. Any discussion of solving America's problems that does not include a course correction on how we compensate workers is foolish.

Saturday, July 4, 2020

Trump Has Exploited the White Supremacy of the GOP


It would be far too easy to dismiss this photo as an anachronism and as something that wasn't already in the water in terms of our politics. This was from 2012, and it was a real sentiment at the time.  There were anti-President Obama demonstrations on a regular basis and they were vicious and racist in nature. Thanks to the Tea Party, it was mainstreamed into our living rooms.

The difference then from right now was, neither Mitt Romney nor Paul Ryan would have been caught dead endorsing this message because it would have resulted in condemnation from the larger GOP establishment. That is what Trump smashed through in 2016 and eradicated in the first year of his presidency. In fact, his destruction of these things is entirely why the GOP deserves to lose every election this year.

No Republican fears condemnation from Mitt Romney. They shit themselves at the thought of a swarming horde being unleashed by a Trump tweet. The takeover has been complete for a while.

Without an establishment to protect the party, you get Trumpism and the poison that comes with it. The white supremacy is a feature not a bug with these people. They want it, and they want to create an environment where it exists without having to pay the price for it.

In some rare cases, you will have an unemployed pundit, a former elected official, or a Mitt Romney who will say "Black Lives Matter" but that's only because they were not compelled by shame to say it sooner. In other cases, a figure like Paul Ryan will entirely remove themselves from the political arena in order to escape accountability. And then you have the full-on, white-power people who Trump thinks will be there to get him re-elected. They won't say it because they are the dead-enders who will stand as long as they can until forced to retire.

If this country can bring back the idea of shame, that might make a difference. Without it, the lowest people will continue to parade around like their ideas mean something.

The same force that is driving the name change of Washington D.C.'s ridiculously non-competitive NFL franchise is pushing directly against the history of this country. It used to be fine to have policy positions that delivered whites the supremacy they felt was always theirs. A Romney-Ryan ticket would have been great for suburban whites and a shit sandwich for everyone else. Tax cuts, reductions in SNAP benefits, letting kids at school go hungry remain mainstream Republican principles dressed in neater themes. Your garden variety Liz Cheney lives for the day when they can openly crap on poor people, rake in the donations, and live in a world free of Trump's reign of error.

They are just counting the days until they are in the minority again. They know the public will blame Democrats for everything that isn't perfect. President Obama dealt with that until the day he left office. And the media is trained to be skeptical of equality and tolerant of conservatives who are willing to complain about being treated unfairly. All the shit that doesn't work, that's because a Democrat wanted it that way and not because a Republican president broke every goddamned thing and left the treasury empty and the military disemboweled.

Change is now hitting this country so hard in the face that it is necessary to pause and think about what's happening. The danger is not that the GOP is going to win close races anymore. The elections of 2020, 2022, and 2024 are going to come in rapid fire succession and each one will be more and more of a tsunami that swamps the old establishment of white supremacy in this country. If you don't get everything you want this November, just wait. The anger that will be unleashed will continue to push forward and will gain in strength. We might end up with 12 states that will cling to the idea that the Republican Party is the only way to go. Those states will see precipitous calamities and declining standards of living while they take in more tax dollars than they pay out, and Democrats will still struggle to explain why that is happening.

The only thing that can stop these forces is justice itself. If we don't make that our goal, nothing else is going to be fixed. You can't correct the course of this country without ensuring that everyone is treated fairly before the law. When people can walk down the street and not be afraid of being killed by a police officer, then and only then will you see a return to the focus on external issues and philosophical ideas. We gotta have equal treatment under the law right the fuck now, and we gotta smash the living shit out of Trump's white power ideology.

Nothing else matters until it has all be swept away and discredited. If we don't wipe out these ideas now, they'll continue to seep into the cracks of our failing democracy and break up the country.

Thursday, February 27, 2020

The Business Savvy President


Everything is crashing down around our Wall Street president, who just doesn't seem so business savvy these days:
Stocks fell sharply once again Thursday as investors worried that the coronavirus might be spreading in the U.S. A slew of corporate and analyst warnings also dragged down the major averages.

The Dow plunged more than 800 points, while the S&P 500 tumbled 2.9% and the Nasdaq sank 3.3%. Those losses put the Dow, S&P 500 and Nasdaq in correction territory, down more than 10% from the record highs set earlier this month.

The CDC confirmed Wednesday the first U.S. coronavirus case of unknown origin in Northern California, indicating possible “community spread” of the disease. The CDC doesn’t know exactly how the patient, a California resident, contracted the virus.
“We’re extremely cautious in the short term,” said Tom Hainlin, an investment strategist at Ascent Private Capital Management. “No one really seems to be an expert on the coronavirus. We haven’t seen anything like this really in our investing lifetimes.”
Apple, Disney and Visa were among the worst-performing Dow stocks, dropping at least 3% each. AMD and Nvidia fell 4% and 4.2%, respectively. Meanwhile, Gilead Sciences climbed 1.9% after the company announced the start of two studies for a possible coronavirus treatment.
The slow collapse of the "Trump Economy" is really the result of being handed the gains of the Obama era and then taking a massive orange dump all over everything. It is beginning to accelerate, and the fake money being pumped into the economy is going to run out faster than Larry Kudlow on a coke binge.

Trump has started trade wars, imposed tariffs, fired competent people left and right, and engaged in every pro-oligarch policy imaginable. This is literally the guy who campaigned on the idea of running America like a for-profit business venture. And instead of prosperity, we get the mother of all Trump bankruptcies. 

Hope your 401K is doing well, MAGA voters.

Monday, May 19, 2014

Take the Money and Run




I think it would be fair to say that an accountability moment and a firm reality check has arrived for everyone who said that Obamacare is the devil that will soshalism this country into the hands of the Kraken.

When given the option to stand behind their principles and continue destroying the lives of people who need the health care provisions of the PPACA, Republicans governors are taking the money that's on the table and they're lying about it. Mike Pence of Indiana is lying when he denies folding in the face of a Medicare benefit that the people of Indiana desperately need. He should go into each and every election from now on wearing an Obama sticker on his nose so that people remember how he gave in to the commies and allowed the Hoosiers to horn in on those Federal dollars.

We heard this time and again--Obamacare will destroy America. That was absolute bullshit, of course. And you would think that future elections would hinge on that but they won't. Without a viable, working media to hold them accountable, the Mike Pences of the GOP will be claiming Obamacare was Romneycare all along and they'll claim it as their own.