Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Americans Think the Economy is Bad – Americans Are Wrong

Americans Are Not Stupid, Just Misinformed by a Weak and Oh What a Sniveling Press

Objective reporting does not come from the U. S. media.  One has to look to foreign sources to get the real picture.  Here is the correct assessment from the Financial Times on the state of the U S. economy.

Donald Trump will enter the White House presiding over one of the stronger US economies any president has inherited in recent history.

On Thursday, the Department of Commerce reported that the US economy grew at a far faster pace in the third quarter of 2016 than previously thought — an annualised rate of 3.5 per cent. Since the 1980s, the only president to have taken office while the economy was growing at a faster rate was George HW Bush.

And what has the Obama administration done?

The latest data stand in sharp contrast to the free-falling economy Barack Obama inherited in 2009, when the US was losing almost 800,000 jobs a month. On the campaign trail, Mr Trump repeatedly characterised the economy under Mr Obama as a disaster, but the economy has come a long way since then.

But were the American media to report such things it would be accused of ‘bias’ and maybe not invited to swimming parties at Mar-a-Lago.   

What about unemployment?  Oh This

The US unemployment rate has fallen to 4.6 per cent. Only one recent president — George W Bush — has taken the oath of office when the US had a lower jobless rate.
Unemployment peaked at 10 per cent in October 2009, just after Mr Obama entered the White House. Ronald Reagan is the only other recent president to have overseen a similarly sized drop in unemployment: the rate shrank from 10.8 per cent in 1982 to 5.3 per cent in 1988.

Some Comments on the House Ethics Rules Fiasco - House Repubicans, Crooks or Morons

Well They Could be Both

The first order of business for the new House Republicans was to essentially eliminate the independent ethics operation, you know where investigators look into ethical violations by House members, or as it is called on Capital Hill, business as usual.  Public opinion thwarted the move but don't look for it to go away, just to be snuck in some other time.

Here is opinion that won't be found in more refined sources.

Image result for images of the gang that couldn't shoot straight
House Republicans Open the New Session
No, its not adult entertainment

1.  Congressional ethics - the term found in the dictionary under the definition of 'oxymoron'.

2.  House Republicans complain that they are being investigated for ethics violations;  don't they realize that's because they engage in ethics violations?

3.  Trump opposed the move because he feels he and his cronies should have a monopoly on ethics violations, doesn't want to share spoils with the House.

4.  Kellyanne defended the House move until she got word Trump had a different take.  In her defense Kellyanne is still recovering from having her principles surgically removed, although in her case it was minor surgery.

5.  Several House Republicans defended the move saying 'Hey, you knew what we were when you elected us'.

6.  Democrats were miffed because being in the minority they do not have the opportunity for graft and self-enrichment that the Republicans do.

7.  Many Republicans didn't mind the fracas because they said it detracted from the fact that they do not have a replacement plan for ACA.

Trump Will Bill Mexico for the Wall, Then Advise Them on How to Welch on Their Obligations

News That May Happen

Washington (UPS) Jan 2017  Donnie the Trump today explained how he was going to say he got Mexico to pay for his wall even though Mexico will not pay for the wall.  It turns out he will use accrual accounting, which as Trump does not say “I know more about accrual accounting than the CPA’s.  In fact I know almost as much as that felon I hired to teach at Trump U.

Under accrual accounting a revenue is booked when it is billed, as opposed to cash accounting where the revenue is booked when it is collected.  In special legislation that the Republican Congress is expected to pass, largely because they have no idea what it means, the authorization of funds for the wall that will require that its costs be accounted for under the GAAP method of accruing the revenue once Mexico is billed for the wall.  And once the revenue is booked Trumpster can say that Mexico has paid for the wall.  “Genius” said Speaker Paul Ryan.

Anticipating the problem of actually getting Mexico to pay for the wall Trump said he would be teaching Mexico authorities how to not pay.  “I know more about cheating people I owe than anyone” Trump bragged at a closed door dinner “and for a small fee I will explain to the Mexicans how they can stiff the United States.  The first thing I will tell them to do is complain of shoddy workmanship and then they can bring up the technicality that while they are being asked to pay for a wall, in most places the wall is just a garden fence and so why should they pay for a fence when they were promised a wall.”

Trump did acknowledge that once it became clear that Mexico would not actually hand over the money the debt from Mexico would have to be written off.  “That will take place when a Democrat is in office” he said “and then we get the added benefit of telling the American public how we were going to make Mexico pay for the wall but the Democrats let them off the hook”.  When asked how he could fool his supporters this way Trump replied “You’re kidding, right, you’ve met my supporters haven’t you?” 

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Donnie to Mommy – John Lewis is Being Mean To Me - Wah Wah

He Thought He Was the Only One Allowed to Question the Legitimacy of a President

Donald Trump and John Lewis
On the right, a real American hero; on the left a real American Scheisskopf

Gosh, isn’t it satisfying to watch the man who spent years questioning whether or not President Obama was born in the U. S. (he was) and was eligible for the Presidency (he was) now the object of a legitimate questioning of how unsullied was his election (it wasn’t).  Donnie rose to fame by claiming Obama was born, well, somewhere other than the United States and even after it was conclusively shown that this was not the case, Trumpie persisted in claiming it was because, well facts don’t matter to Donnie.

Now that Trump is on the receiving end of this, properly so given the overwhelming evidence Russia interfered with the election and the conclusion of intelligence and law enforcement agencies that this was the case, suddenly questioning an election is out of bounds?  Chief Sycophant Mike Pence thinks so.

Pence expressed respect for Lewis, a Georgia Democrat and icon of the civil rights movement, but said he hoped the congressman would "reconsider" his comments that he didn't "see this president-elect as a legitimate president.”

"Donald Trump won this election fair and square," Pence told host Chris Wallace on "Fox News Sunday." "The American people know that, and while I have great respect for John Lewis and his contributions, particularly with the civil rights movement, I was deeply disappointed to see someone of his stature question the legitimacy of Donald Trump’s election as president and say he’s not attending the inauguration."

Gosh Republicans, you know your outrage would be a lot more credible if you hadn’t spent the last 8 years denying the legitimacy of Barack Obama.  But that would have required intellectual honesty, wouldn’t it, something you are just not capable of.

Hooray for Utah Republicans - Want to Lower Alcohol Limit to .05%

Rational Government Coming from Republicans - Outliers do Happen

Lost in the news about a radical right wing government about to take power and destroy many cherished American insitutions is this story about Utah thinking about lower the alcohol limit.

An effort is underway in the state to lower the legal blood-alcohol concentration for driving to .05 — a first in the nation. Currently, all 50 states have a .08 cap, eschewing suggestions from the National Transportation Safety Board to redefine what constitutes drunk driving.
But state Rep. Norman Thurston, a Republican from Provo who plans to introduce a bill on the issue in the upcoming legislative session, wants that to change in 2017.
“Impairment starts with the first drink, and we want to establish this state as one where you just simply do not drink and drive,” said Thurston, noting he worked with officials from the Utah Highway Patrol while drafting the legislation. “This is all about safety.”

Wow, who could oppose such a thing? Oh yes, the people who make money from getting other people all liquiored up and driving their cars into other people.

Image result for images of drunks in a bar
So what if they kill a family - their rights are more important

In 2013, the NTSB released a report recommending that states lower to .05 the limit at which people can be prosecuted for drunk driving.
While the national board characterized its proposal as a way to prevent drunk driving deaths, restaurant industry groups pushed back, questioning the effectiveness of such a change. The American Beverage Institute portrayed it as “criminalizing perfectly responsible behavior.”
And don't forget the people who make a living opposing government regulations which save lives.

That’s the same argument coming from some detractors of the proposed legislation in Utah.
“Why not focus on reducing the speed limit, or limiting texting while driving?” said Connor Boyack, president of the libertarian-leaning Libertas Institute, located outside Salt Lake City. “Those are real factors in causing traffic deaths.… This would just criminalize people not causing any problems.”
Not to worry merchants of destruction, we are sure the incoming administration will protect your right to sell alcohol so that people can drink and drive. It's what the Founding Fathers would have put in the Constitution if they had been stupid and callous instead of decent and noble.

Hypocrisy Hall of Fame – Charter Members the House Freedom Caucus

Just the First in a Long Line of Aspirants

Conservatives sometimes serve useful functions.  For example they want to get government out of people’s personal lives.  But then they go ahead and ruin it by going back on their principles when they want government to interfere in personal lives to make people behave the way they want them to behave.  Case in point, their opposition to rights for minorities, immigrants and the LGBT community.

The latest betrayal by conservatives is on the deficit.

Some of the most conservative members of Congress say they are ready to vote for a budget that would — at least on paper — balloon the deficit to more than $1 trillion by the end of the decade, all for the sake of eventually repealing the Affordable Care Act.

In a dramatic reversal, many members of the hard-line House Freedom Caucus said Thursday they are prepared later this month to support a budget measure that would explode the deficit and increase the public debt to more than $29.1 trillion by 2026, figures contained in the budget resolution itself.

Yessir, one thing constant in this world is that you can count of conservatives not to stand on anything.  So we say welcome Freedom Caucus as the charter members of the DPE’s Hypocrisy Hall of Fame.  Don’t feel lonely, other members of government will soon be joining you, but they may never aspire to the heights of hypocrisy that you have obtained.

Monday, January 16, 2017

The Racism and Bigotry of Trump's Attack on John Lewis

All African Americans Are Criminals and Live in Crime Infested Neighborhoods

It is difficult to imagine that a man who spent years attacking President Obama's legitimacy is now upset that someone with the stature and courage and grace of Rep. John Lewis would attack his legitimacy.  But even worse is the disgusting prejudice behind the attack.

Trump's reasoning is basically this.

1.  John Lewis is an African American.

2.  John Lewis is a member of the House.

3.  The only way an African American can get elected is if he is from an African American majority district.

4.  African American communities are characterized by high crime and slums.

5.  Therefore even without looking at or knowing anything about Rep. Lewis's district, it must be one with high crime rates and other major social problems because it is not a white district.

Yeah, racism and bigotry, 2017 style from Donald Trump.  Maybe at least part of the nation will wake up to the true nature of the man.

AMA to Republicans on Health Care: Lay out for the American people, in reasonable detail, what will replace current policies.

Republicans:  Well hell, don'tcha think we would if we could

The AMA, that big conservative doctor organization has a simple request.  When Repubicans repeal ACA tell us what you are replacing it with.

"In considering opportunities to make coverage more affordable and accessible to all Americans, it is essential that gains in the number of Americans with health insurance coverage be maintained.
Consistent with this core principle, we believe that before any action is taken through reconciliation or other means that would potentially alter coverage, policymakers should lay out for the American people, in reasonable detail, what will replace current policies. Patients and other stakeholders should be able to clearly compare current policy to new proposals so they can make informed decisions about whether it represents a step forward in the ongoing process of health reform."

Republicans did not reply "It's none of your damn business, this isn't a democracy you know" but everyone knows they were thinking it.

Republicans Love the Constitution Except When People Actually Use it to Exercise Their Rights in Opposition

Then It's 'What Freedom of Speech?'

A key component of freedom in America is the right to speak out without fear of intimidation or penalty from government.  Loss of freedom of speech is loss of freedom.  So it is alarming when a newspaper reports this.

Some companies, anxious about changes in health policy, said they were afraid to speak out because they feared that Mr. Trump would attack them on Twitter, as he has badgered Boeing, Ford, General Motors, Lockheed Martin and Toyota.

Sounds like Russia, looks like Russia, gee we wonder if this intimidation and threating policy is from someone who admires Russia and wants to introduce Russian policies in the United States?

Sunday, January 15, 2017

WSJ Prints Picture of a Stereotypical Dem by a Condescending Conservative Lou Weiss

Maybe That’s the Only Kind of Conservative

One of the many things conservatives whine about, and boy do they whine a lot led by the Whiner-in-Chief is that Dems and Progressives look down on them.  It turns out the opposite is true as evidenced by a vomit quality op-ed piece in the WSJ by a self described ‘adorable’ conservative.

The writing categorizes all who aren’t conservatives as people who know nothing about football, (we know more than most who watch Cajun TV) who boycott Chik-Fil- A (hasn’t happened for years but then no one expects conservatives to go for facts when fiction helps their cause), don’t know how to use a box wrench (really, we do) and live life in comfy hi rise hotels (uh isn’t that their hero Donnie?).  So let’s invite the prejudicial bigoted Trump voter, the true Deplorable to listen to a few facts about those who oppose government by lies and insults.

  1. Progressives fight for policies like health care that will benefit mostly the lower income voter.  Progressives usually have good health insurance, they want it for those who do not, typically those who insult the effort.
  2. Progressives don’t want to take away guns, they want common sense gun safety so gun nut conservatives will not shoot themselves or allow their children to shoot them or their siblings.
  3. The environment is pretty good where progressives live, they want clean air, clean water and clean energy for the non urban areas where conservatives lives.
  4. Progressives recognize that government programs cost money and are willing to raise their own taxes to pay for benefits for conservatives.  All they want is maybe a simple thank you (like Louisiana to the rest of us for all that Katrina help and all that flood control billions).
  5. The pursuit of equal opportunity is a progressive goal; equal opportunity for those conservatives who are disadvantaged and need it more than college educated progressives who already have it.
  6. Community standards like telling the truth, refraining from racial epithets, tolerance for all views are progressive characteristics and they hope that conservatives would join in.
  7. Finally progressive believe that if one is a lying, cheating, serial sexual assaulter with no previous experience at any level of government, maybe, just maybe that person should not be President of the United States.

So yeah conservatives, find out for yourselves how decent and caring and generous and compassionate the other side is instead of assuming that the lies, distortions, half truths and just plain insults of Fox News and A.M. radio are true.  A little open mindedness goes a long way.  And try not to yell racial slurs and other incendiary disgusting comments at political rallies, all you are doing is reinforcing negative views of yourselves and making it harder for the rest of us to actually give you any credibility.

Saturday, January 14, 2017

Trump Cabinet Picks Introduce New Strategy for Confirmation Hearings – Lying

And Other Snarky Comments on the News

Attorney General Designate Jeff Sessions says he will stand up to Trump.  Those who believe that statement need to check their portfolio and maybe take another look at that time share purchase of the Brooklyn Bridge.

Trump says the report that Russia has ‘compromising’ information on him is fake news.  We agree.  Trump has already been exposed as a congenital liar, a serial sexual assaulter, a bigot and a bully, a person who cheats on his taxes and doesn’t pay his suppliers.  What else could there be?

Ben Carson is doubtful that government help for people who need decent housing is good policy.  Of course the fact that he benefited from this in his past just means he’s the hypocrite of the day in Trump World.

Republicans are outraged, outraged that Senator Cory Booker  testified against a  fellow Senator, Jeff Sessions in his confirmation hearings.  This violates an unwritten rule of Senate courtesy.  Republicans are outraged because they feel they are the only ones who should be allowed to violate decades long behavioral norms, that Democrats have to obey the rules, they do not.

Fox News settled another sexual harassment claim, this time against faux moralist Bill O’Reilly.  The network has promised its viewers it would not abandon its ‘holier than thou’ attitude and moral condemnation of others.

VW is reported ready to plead guilty to criminal charges in its deliberate violation of anti-pollution laws by rigging its emission testing results.  In America corporations are furious because they believe the government should just let corporations that engage in criminal acts off with a relatively small fine and no admission of guilt.  Mitt Romney said corporations are people, but he meant this only for the good stuff that people get from government.

The New York Times reports that the European Court of Human Rights has ruled that the Swiss government can force a Muslim family to make its young girls take co-ed swimming lessons.  Now many of us think the Muslim fanaticism about co-ed activities are not appropriate, but if that is their religion so be it, no harm no foul.  As for he Court of Human Rights maybe they ought to live up to their name.  And while we think Brexit was a bad idea, one motivation for the exit vote was to remove Britain from jurisdiction from this Court.  Good thinking.

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, a man rejected by Donald Trump has returned to his state and now says he will focus his last year in office (in any office we hope) on drug abuse.  Seems only fair since his near total absence from being Governor to pursue his national ambitions probably contributed to the drug crisis.

Friday, January 13, 2017

Just In - Architects Release 1st Glimpse of Trump Wall

Well No Wonder Mexico Won't Pay for It

Image result for images of chickens and fences
Not as impressive as we thought, but then most things Trump are not

Trumpie Picks Lying Cheating Plagiarist for NSC Position

Update:  Ms. Crowley has apparently withdrew from the position.  She probably felt but did not say "I thought being a cheating plagiarist would be a plus in the Trump Administration"

Is Trump Mortified?, No. Why Not?, She'll Fit Right In

Monica the Plagiarist
The selection by Trumpster of Monica Crowley for a position in national security has brought forth charges,  substantiated by Politico, that this individual is a plagiarist.

"Monica Crowley, President-Elect Donald J. Trump’s pick for a top National Security Council job, plagiarized numerous passages in her Ph.D. dissertation, Politico Magazine has found."

Turns out Dr. Crowley has several cases against her.

"This finding comes on the heels of CNN’s Saturday report that Crowley, the conservative author and commentator whom Trump tapped as senior director of strategic communications for the National Security Council, plagiarized more than 50 passages in her 2012 book What the (Bleep) Just Happened, copying directly from conservative columns, news articles, Wikipedia and in one case a podiatrist’s website."

Trump's response, politics conspiring against him.  

"Despite the news, the Trump team continues to support the appointment. “Any attempt to discredit Monica is nothing more than a politically motivated attack that seeks to distract from the real issues facing this country,” a transition spokesperson told CNN. The transition team did not reply to requests for comment for this story."

Any chance Columbia will take back her PH.D.? No, they like everybody else in American institutions are afraid of being trashed on twitter.

This forum supports Trump's decision to hire her. After all he should be allowed to consort with his own kind.  And besides, the number of honest people willing to work for him is very limited.

Thursday, January 12, 2017

James Comey Says He Would Never Comments Publicly on Open Investigation

Memo to Jimmy:  Visit the Creidibility Store and Buy Some - Yours and the FBI's Is All Gone

Hidden by the non-news that is getting headlines is this remarkable story from Salon.

Dream Cast: Pinocchio
Comey as he looks today

 "Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., then referenced an interview in which a top Russian diplomat said his government had been in contact with the Trump campaign and asked Comey, “Has the FBI investigated these reported relationships, and, if so, what are the agency’s findings?” What was this all about?
Comey responded by saying, “I would never comment on investigations, whether we have one or not, in an open forum like this. So I really can’t answer it one way or another.” Considering his notorious behavior with respect to the Hillary Clinton email server investigation, this naturally elicited some incredulous reactions, notably from Sen. Angus King, I-Maine, who followed up quickly by asking if Comey planned to answer Wyden’s question. And when Comey repeated his statement, King archly replied, “The irony of your making that statement here — I cannot avoid.”
Now if only this involved an actress maybe it would have gotten some coverage.  But that would be asking the press to be, you know, like a real press.

The Unbearable Sadness of Robert F. Kennedy Jr.

One More Betrayal of the Premier Family of Modern America

Robert F. Kennedy, murdered in 1968, stands as the iconic American of his generation.  A man of great compassion, he came to it the way that wealthy privileged Americans should come to it, from seeing suffering and discrimination and hatred.  Originally a McCarthy sympathizer, he became the leading voice of care and concern.

Now his namesake son is besmirching his name and his family. 

"President-elect Donald Trump asked Robert F. Kennedy Jr., a proponent of a widely discredited theory that vaccines cause autism, to chair a new commission on vaccine safety and scientific integrity, Kennedy said Tuesday."

 No, it’s not just that he is joining the Trump team and giving legitimacy where none is due, but he is also advocating a health care policy in an area where he joins Trump in his ignorance and is fostering a policy that could doom millions of children to disease and death.

"The announcement was met with alarm from health professionals who say that putting a proponent of a conspiracy theory in a position of authority on this issue is dangerous.

“That’s very frightening; it’s difficult to imagine anyone less qualified to serve on a commission for vaccine science,” said Peter Hotez, dean of the National School of Tropical Medicine at Baylor College of Medicine and president of the Sabin Vaccine Institute, a nonprofit that works to control, treat and eliminate vaccine-preventable and neglected tropical diseases.

“The science is clear: Massive evidence showing no link between vaccines and autism, and as both a scientist who develops vaccines for poverty-related neglected diseases and the father of an adult daughter with autism, there’s not even any plausibility for a link,” Hotez continued. “Autism is a genetic condition.”

Yep, just when you thought things could not get any worse something like this comes along.  If ignorance is bliss then in the area of medicine and health care Trump and Kennedy Jr. must be the happiest people on earth.

Jeff Sessions in His Own Words Why He Should Not Be Attorney General

Folks, Listen to the Man

From the NYT

Gay Marriage
Mr. Sessions said that court rulings giving gay couples the right to marry eroded American culture and values.
It is not disputable that adopting a same-sex marriage culture undermines and weakens marriage.
Senate speech, July 13, 2004

Of course, no one was able to demonstrate that in a court of law, which did dispute it.  But really, there is this.

Church and State
Mr. Sessions, a Methodist of deep faith, has argued that the Establishment Clause of the Constitution has been overinterpreted and the Free Exercise Clause has been ignored. The result, he said, is the unnecessary prohibition of expressions of faith in public spaces.
The Constitution says we shall not establish a religion — Congress shall not establish a religion. It doesn’t say states couldn’t establish a religion.
Senate speech, March 10, 2016

Ok, the Constitution also doesn't say that a bigoted moron cannot become Attornehy General or a Senator so he may be on to something.

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Criticism of Meryl Streep at the Golden Globes – Example Number 325 How the Press Sides with Trump

Why Can’t We Have an Honest and Effective Free Press?

Following on the announcement by the Wall Street Journal that it would not label Donnie Trump’s lies as lies we now have another blatant example of how the press excuses Donnie’s lies and personal attacks by attacking his attackers.  At the Golden Globes Meryl Streep made an eloquent and impassioned statement about the lack of moral character if Trumpie, and that elicited this response from some commentator at the LA Times. 

Notice the title.

Why both sides are a little wrong in the Meryl Streep-Donald Trump battle

No, both sides are not a little wrong.  Trump out and out lied in denying he mocked a disabled reporter.  Ms. Streep did not lie.

But then the “unbiased” reporter argues that Streep should have talked about the issues, not about Trump’s complete and total lack of integrity as a person.  And of course Trumpster has never defined issues.  His position on health, 'we need to do something'.

The writer fails to understand, with respect to Trumpie his person is an issue.  Unlike any Presidential candidate in history, much less an elected one this man is unfit to hold office.  And that is an issue.  So in attacking Trump Ms. Streep was setting out a position on an issue.  But the press just is so afraid of being called biased for stating the truth that they are biased, in the other direction.

Trump Wants Immediate Replacement of ACA; Has Put Forth Absolutely No Proposals; Wants to Blame Democrats for Failure to Replace

funny doctor: Funny doctor holding a pill
The face of the GOP on health care

Today in Insanity

Sen. Rand Paul Says  He Has Plan – Probably a Bunch of ‘Principles’

Confused – You Will Still Be After Reading This

Here is one of the strangest stories ever to be written about national policy.  It seems Trumpy is demanding Congress pass a replacement for ACA, and has no idea of what it should be.

President-elect Donald J. Trump demanded on Tuesday that Congress immediately repeal the Affordable Care Act and pass another health law quickly thereafter, issuing a nearly impossible request: replace a health law that took nearly two years to pass with one Republicans would have only weeks to shape.

“We have to get to business,” Mr. Trump told The New York Times in a telephone interview. “Obamacare has been a catastrophic event.”

What’s he mean ‘we’ kemo sabe?

And there’s this.

Mr. Trump appeared to be unclear both about the timing of already scheduled votes in Congress and about the difficulty of his demand — a repeal vote “probably some time next week” and a replacement “very quickly or simultaneously, very shortly thereafter.”

Ok, and what about this.

That uncertainty apparently convinced Mr. Trump to leap into the fray. Not only did he try to steel Republican spines, but he threatened Democrats who might stand in his way, saying he would campaign against them, especially in states that he won in November.

Gosh, campaigning against Democrats for not abandoning their signature issue, health care for everyone.  That must them shaking in their boots, although not from fear but from laughter. 

And now Sen. Rand Paul, who heads the do nothing ever part of the GOP says he will introduce a plan.  Really, when Trump has ceded leadership to Rand Paul you know he has hit rock bottom in the leadership sweepstakes, at least until his next issue.

New California Laws Demonstrate the Stupidity of Californians – And They’re Probably Smarter than the Rest of Us

After All they Overwhelmingly Rejected Trump

The LA Times has listed and explained new laws that go into effect in California with the New Year.  Here they are some of them in all their glory.

Those convicted of driving under the influence must install a device in their cars that would ensure they are sober before they can start the ignition.

Well that would seem like a good idea for everyone.  Let’s see the technology has been around for decades, only reason it hasn’t been used is a lot of people think the right of driving drunk and killing people is in the Constitution.

The state’s ban on texting while driving expands to include other distractions, such as searching for “Pokemon Go” characters. 

Gosh, wonder how much genius it took to think of that one. 

Once a gray area for motorcyclists, new rules will be established by the California Highway Patrol for how fast they can drive when riding between cars along the lane line. 

Here’s a suggestion, zero.

Companies including Uber and Lyft can no longer hire drivers who are registered sex offenders, have been convicted of violent felonies or have had a DUI conviction within the last seven years. 

Uh, anybody worried that they had to pass a law to actually enforce this?

Drivers for companies like Uber and Lyft can’t have a blood alcohol content of 0.04% or more. 

Here’s a suggestion, zero.

School districts must improve bus driver training to avoid students being left alone on buses and must notify the Department of Motor Vehicles if students are left behind. 

Well don’t see why they have to notify anybody, and what does the training involve other than getting them in a room and yelling, “Hey you stupid drivers, don’t leave anyone alone on the bus”

In response to outrage over the six-month sentence for sexual assault given to former Stanford student Brock Turner, prison time will be mandatory for those convicted of assault in which the victim was unconscious or not capable of giving consent because of intoxication. 

Gosh that takes the fun out of being a college scholarship athlete.  Church affiliated schools should be exempted after all they would never do something like that, yeah we’re talking to you Baylor.

County prosecutors can pursue felony charges against people caught with the most common date-rape drugs and who also have demonstrated the intent to commit a sexual assault. 

So what exactly was this before?  Oh, fraternity fun and games.  Does this cover college athletes?  Yeah we’re talking to you Baylor.

It will be tougher for law enforcement to seize someone’s cash, cars or property. A criminal conviction is now required before the police can permanently take from a suspect any assets valued under $40,000. 

There is that thing in the Constitution about ‘takings’ but that doesn’t stop police departments, otherwise taxes would have to be raised.

A ban is imposed on publishing the addresses of domestic violence victims.

To think there are assholes out there that need a law to keep them from doing that.

It is now a crime to use ransomware, malware or intrusive software injected into a computer or network to hold data hostage until money is paid. 

Really, well that doesn’t seem fair, now the crooks will just have to go back to kidnapping people for ransom.

Public schools can now expel students for bullying through video or sexting. 

But don’t we all want those kids to stay in school and upgrade their bullying skills to really good cruelty?

People will no longer be able to buy semi-automatic rifles that have a bullet button allowing removal of the ammunition magazine, commonly used in mass shootings. 

Does the NRA know about this?  Didn’t the Founding Fathers allow mass shootings as a basic right?

The state can’t fund or require public employees to travel to states believed to discriminate against lesbians, gays, bisexual or transgender people. 

Yeah, we’re talking to you North Carolina.  And then there are these two, which demonstrate once and for all that the California legislature is on the job.

Beauty salons and barbershops can now offer patrons a free beer or glass of wine. 
Denim is now the state’s official fabric to recognize its role in California history. 

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Charities Pay Huge Sums to Donald Trump and Mar-a-Lago to Hold Fund Raisers

Yes, Supporting the Enemy of Their Causes

Disgust in Palm Beach

It turns out that Trump’s Mar-a-Lago exclusive club in Florida is not just an ugly display of opulence gone bad.  It also charges huge sums for charities to use it for fund raising, and incredibly, charities are willing to do so.

It’s booked solid from December through March, with big and small events every weekend for organizations ranging from the Palm Beach Police Foundation to the American Cancer Society.

And of course Trump does nothing that does not line his own pockets, that’s the kind of person he is.

Mar-a-Lago is more than Trump’s Florida home — and future winter White House. It’s also a high-priced members-only club — a membership is $100,000, plus $14,000 in annual dues — and rentable venue for groups looking to put on large and small events. Prices to host a big gala at Mar-a-Lago range from $100,000 to $300,000, and the venue needs to be booked more than a year in advance.

And if a charity gets less out the experience than Trump, well too bad, after the purpose here is to make Trump money, not to aid a charity.

Tina Philips, president and chief executive of the Palm Beach Habilitation Center, said in October that her group would take a careful look before it booked Mar-a-Lago again.
But now Philips said she’s glad her group will be at Mar-a-Lago again this year for its Hab-a-Hearts luncheon on March 20.

“It’s the best venue in this county,” Philips said. “We’re not hearing any backlash. We believe our attendance will be way up this year, because we’re having it on Presidents’ Day in the president’s house.”

Philips said one of the best reasons to keep the event at Mar-a-Lago: It makes money.  “It brings in big numbers,” she said. “We’re able to net well over $100,000. It’s our biggest fundraiser of the year.”

Hm, let’s do the math.  The charity gets $100k, Trump gets maybe $300k.  What a deal.

And what about groups that actually show concern?  Well hardly.

Groups that expressed concern about continuing to hold events there following the release of an “Access Hollywood” video in which Trump brags about forcing himself on women have decided to keep their galas at the venue as scheduled. A spokeswoman for the Susan G. Komen foundation, one such group, had told the Associated Press in October that the foundation would “discuss” its Mar-a-Lago event.

Let’s see, they are concerned so they will discuss it at their event at Mar-a-Lago.  A lotta concern there.

What has to be done here is that the rest of us, the people who actually care about the nation and about charities need to say to any of them that hold events at Trump venues that no, we will not support you, we will not give to you, we will not work for you and we will condemn you to the maximum extent possible.  You are betraying your mission, you are making things worse and until you recognize this and stop it we cannot help you.

Is the message clear?