Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Candidates and caucuses...but where are my crocuses?

Greetings, Dot Calm Readers
and Truth Crusaders!
Let's jump right in--lots of news today!
According to Paste Magazine,
superdelegates do NOT decide primaries.
So, ignore the superdelegates--
full steam ahead, Bernie!
Let's watch the world Bern!
From Paste Magazine

After Sanders' Big Win in New Hampshire, Establishment Figures Want to Scare You with Superdelegates. Here's Why It's Bullshit

After Sanders' Big Win in New Hampshire, Establishment Figures Want to Scare You with Superdelegates. Here's Why It's Bullshit

Bernie Sanders’ win in the New Hampshire primary Tuesday night came with some pretty impressive footnotes:

1. His margin of victory was the highest for a non-incumbent candidate in any state since JFK.
2. He won almost every demographic group—male, female, young, old, moderate, liberal, college educated, high school-educated—with the exception of voters making more than $200,000 per year.
3. He became the first Jewish candidate to win a state primary in U.S. history.
4. He became the first non-Christian candidate to win a state primary in U.S. history.

Sanders isn’t one to emphasize his religious affiliation—his political beliefs make him enough of an outsider as it is—so you won’t read much coverage about the historic nature of his win. What you will read about is how it’s going to change his primary battle against Hillary Clinton. The path to the nomination is still difficult for Sanders, and Clinton should still be considered the favorite, but winning New Hampshire in a blowout will give his candidacy a new kind of credibility and momentum. Sanders was polling below five percent nationally when he joined the race, and to come this far in such a short time, against an overwhelming favorite, is a bit staggering—so staggering that a frustrated Clinton “might “shake up her entire campaign.

The narrative has changed, which means that establishment figures are duty-bound to change it back. If you’re an avid follower of politics, you may have seen statistics like these:


Oh no, you might be thinking, look at those delegate totals! He’s getting killed! The New Hampshire primary is meaningless! He didn’t even really win! On the Sanders Reddit page this morning, users were asking whether the whole primary process was a Sisyphean task, and if victory was impossible.

Make no mistake: That’s the point of this kind of messaging. To discourage, dismay, and dishearten, in the wake of something that should feel really positive for Sanders supporters. Reality check: The system is bigger than you, and you can’t change it, so go home.
I have no clue if Timothy McBride has any affiliation or even affection for Hillary Clinton, and he was certainly not alone in advancing this talking point. (Update: Surprise, surprise, the two are connected.) What I do know is that he tweeted these statistics out last night and again this morning, and whatever his intentions—and those like him—Clinton herself could not have written a better media script.

So what’s happening here? Are those delegate counts right?

Well, no—McBride’s math is wrong, but I’m assuming that wasn’t a malicious mistake. The actual count is 394-42.

So technically, yes, the count is close to accurate. He’s not overtly lying. But are they illustrative of some critical, insurmountable problem for Sanders? Not at all. Are they even relevant to the primary race? Barely. Certainly not now, and probably not ever. Are these messages deceptive, even subtly?

Yes. Absolutely. And they’re propagated by people who are withholding the full story in the hopes that people like you and me are too stupid and complacent to find out on our own.

McBride’s sneaky tactic is to count “Superdelegates,” which is how he arrives at his imbalanced total. Accept the numbers blindly, and you might feel an impulse toward panic. My message to you: Chill. It’s a clever trick, but a silly one, and it won’t affect anything. To counter this narrative, let’s examine the political reality behind Superdelegates, and explain how they really work, Q&A style.

Q: You say Superdelegates don’t matter, but I don’t even know what they are. How does Hillary have 300+ already?
A: Let’s make it simple: The Democratic nominee for president is decided based on which candidate wins the most delegates. You will find conflicting information about how many there are in 2016, but according to the AP, the delegate total is 4,763. It takes 2,382 of those to secure the nomination. And of the 4,763, 712 are “Superdelegates”—about 15 percent of the overall total.

Q: Okay, but what’s the difference?
A: The 4,051 “normal” delegates are allocated based on the votes in each state. That’s why we have primaries and caucuses in all of them, eventually—the will of the people decides where each of these delegates goes. In New Hampshire last night, Sanders won 13 delegates to Clinton’s nine, with two left to award when the last precincts report (in all likelihood, based on current percentages, it will finish 15-9 for Sanders). In Iowa, where Clinton won a narrow victory, the current delegate count is 23-21 in her favor. This process will repeat in every state until all 4,051 “normal” delegates have been allotted.

On the Democratic side, these delegates are rewarded proportionally in each state, rather than on the winner-take-all basis most states use in the electoral college. Those delegates are “pledged” to the appropriate candidate, and will not change affiliation at the national convention.

Q: That makes sense, but what are Superdelegates?
A: The remaining 712 delegates are not decided by each state’s popular vote, but rather by individuals who are given a vote by the Democratic party. They are free to choose whoever they want at the national convention, regardless of how the vote went in their home state.

Q: Who gets to be a Superdelegate?
A: Every Democratic member of Congress, House and Senate, is a Superdelegate (240 total). Every Democratic governor is a Superdelegate (20 total). Certain “distinguished party leaders,” 20 in all, are given Superdelegate status. And finally, the Democratic National Committee names an additional 432 Superdelegates—an honor that typically goes to mayors, chairs and vice-chairs of the state party, and other dignitaries.

Q: So they have way more importance than an ordinary voter?
A: Oh yeah. In 2008, each Superdelegate had about as much clout as 10,000 voters. It will be roughly the same in 2016.

Q: How did this system come to exist?
A: I’ll make this history lesson brief: In 1968, after the riots at the Democratic national convention in Chicago, party leaders knew they needed to change the nomination process to give ordinary people more of a say in how the potential president was chosen. Thus, the state-by-state primary/caucus system was born. By the 1980s, the party elites felt left out of the process, bereft of all influence, and they thought their absence had hurt the party with weaker candidates like George McGovern and Jimmy Carter. Jim Hunt, Governor of North Carolina, was commissioned to come up with a new system, and by 1984 the Superdelegate system was implemented. Democrats thought that by giving more power to party leaders, it would prevent “unelectable” candidates, beloved by the populace, from costing them the general election.

Q: Why does Hillary Clinton have so many more Superdelegates this time around?
A: Because Superdelegates are the establishment, and Clinton is the establishment candidate. Period.
A quick look at the chart below, courtesy of Wikipedia, shows how insanely imbalanced the Superdelegate race is at this point in time:
Screen Shot 2016-02-10 at 9.52.47 AM.png
In Congress, Hillary Clinton has 39 of the 47 Senators, with seven uncommitted. Bernie Sanders has an endorsement from just one Senator. That Senator’s name? Bernie Sanders. In the House, Hillary leads 157-2, and her advantage in the DNC is 138-10. Even among the “distinguished party leaders,” which includes Bill Clinton, Howard Dean, Dick Gephardt, and Walter Mondale, she leads eight to one. Overall, the total is 355-14, with 341 uncommitted.

So when you see tweets like McBride’s above, where he cites Clinton’s 431-50 edge, he’s adding these “pledged” Superdelegates. We’ve already seen that his math is wrong—per the New York Times, the actual updated total is 394-42. But when you look at actual popular votes that have taken place, Sanders leads 34-32.

Q: From everything you’ve told me so far, I can’t understand why you’re calling Superdelegate votes “irrelevant.” It seems to me like they have the same voting power as a normal delegate, and this puts Sanders in a tremendous hole from the word “go.”
A: Here’s why it doesn’t matter: Superdelegates have never decided a Democratic nomination. It would be insane, even by the corrupt standards of the Democratic National Committee, if a small group of party elites went against the will of the people to choose the presidential nominee.

This has already been an incredibly tense election, and Sanders voters are already expressing their unwillingness to vote for Clinton in the general election. When you look at the astounding numbers from Iowa and New Hampshire, where more than 80 percent of young voters have chosen Sanders over Clinton, regardless of gender, it’s clear that Clinton already finds herself in a very tenuous position for the general election. It will be tough to motivate young supporters, but any hint that Bernie was screwed by the establishment will result in total abandonment.

Democrats win when turnout is high, and if the DNC decides to go against the will of the people and force Clinton down the electorate’s throat, they’d be committing political suicide.

The important thing to know here is that Superdelegates are merely pledged to a candidate. We know who they support because they’ve stated it publicly, or been asked by journalists. They are not committed, and can change at any time. If Bernie Sanders wins the popular vote, he will be the nominee. End of story.

Q: But it’s not the end of the story, is it? Hasn’t the DNC pulled some shady shit already?
A: Oh yeah. They totally rigged the debate schedule to limit Sanders’ exposure, and now that he’s gaining ground on Clinton, they’re desperate to add more. Sanders probably won the popular vote in Iowa, but the party elite there are refusing to release popular vote totals, even though that’s exactly what they did in 2008. It’s been an embarrassment of Clinton protectionism from the very beginning.
However, that doesn’t mean they’ll overthrow the will of the people when it comes to the presidential nomination. Assuming Sanders wins the popular vote nationwide, and assuming the Superdelegates put Clinton over the top, let’s consider the consequences:

1. Sanders supporters abandon Clinton completely, cutting off a huge portion of her base.
2. Massive protests at the convention, and a party split in half.
3. Republicans have the easiest attack in presidential election history: “Her own party didn’t even want her!”
4. The perception that Clinton is a dishonest politician grows wings, and even if people are reluctant to vote for the GOP nominee, an independent like Bloomberg could strip away an awful lot of votes.

All of this spells disaster for the Democrats. It may not be too corrupt for the DNC to imagine—they’ve got good imaginations—but it’s too transparent to execute. The winner of the delegate count from state primaries and caucuses will win the nomination, and the Superdelegates will fall in line. Just as they have in every single election since the system was implemented.

(Including in 2008, when this same concern was raised—would Superdelegates cost Obama the nomination?)

Even the Democratic power structure isn’t so short-sighted that it would cut off its nose to spite its face.

Q: If Superdelegates can shift allegiances, and if going against the people’s will is so unthinkable, why don’t the pundits ever mention it?
A: It’s almost like there’s an agenda, right? Not to keep picking on McBride, who is a very minor figure in all this, and who had the bad luck to appear on my timeline yesterday, but what purpose do those numbers serve other than to discourage Sanders supporters? They’re essentially meaningless, but when presented without context, they give the impression of an unbeatable juggernaut, and tacitly encourage outsiders to give up all hope. On a smaller level, it’s the same when you see charts like these, from Politico:
Screen Shot 2016-02-10 at 10.25.05 AM.png
Sanders wins, but still loses the delegate count? How? Why?

It’s enough to provoke despair, if you don’t understand the system, and none of these outlets are bothering to explain. The reader is left to draw his or her own conclusions, and it can seem overwhelming. I don’t know if the explicit goal is to have a chilling effect on participation, and to discourage passionate people from participating in our democracy, but it certainly feels that way.

So, do yourself a favor and ignore the Superdelegates. If Hillary Clinton wins the most popular delegates, she will be the party nominee. If Bernie Sanders wins the most popular delegates, he will be the party nominee. And anyone who tells you otherwise—even by implication, and even armed with misleading statistics—is selling you a bill of goods. Don’t buy it.
The only demographic Bernie lost in NH
was voters making over $200,000/year.
What does that tell you?
(Et tu, wealthy Dems? Et tu?)
And now, from the "Gaze deeply into mah crystal bawls" department, Dot Calm's shadow presents a sneak preview:
What would America look like if "moderate" Marco Rubio or any Republican takes the White House in 2016?

Remember, the Get Obama Party does not tolerate deviations from the party line. And whoever is elected in November will be appointing SCOTUS judges, who could find themselves hearing challenges to the Bill of Rights and other parts of the Constitution that make America what it is. Republicans bitch and moan that Obama is "changing America" (i.e., taking away everyone's bibles and guns and making us all Muslims living under Sharia law, which makes Obama the Worst. Muslim. Ever.), but it's really Republicans who want to change the country at its roots, by turning back the clock on civil rights by 150 years and by instituting Christianity as the official state religion. Bait and switch anyone? Projecting, anyone? Hypocrisy, anyone? Bueller? BUELLER?!  
No Planned Parenthood,
which means birth control and abortion
only for women with the money and means.
Ladies, you'd better go online NOW
and find out how to take care of your
birth control and abortion needs at home,
by yourself, without a doctor
or a pharmacy.
Ever heard of Susun Weed?
You'd better get a copy of her book
and recommended supplies NOW.
You'd better stock up on condoms
and INSIST that he use one...
and know how to self-abort if he
"decides" not to...
or if you get raped...
in which case, your rapist may sue YOU
for child support and custody!
Yes, many Republican jurisdictions already allow this!
Christians and Muslims agree:
rape is always the woman's fault...
some white-trash Americans want to legalize rape!
You'd better self-abort before anyone knows you're pregnant
because they'll put you in JAIL if you have a miscarriage...!
Yes, it already happens IN AMERICA!
State-mandated Quiverfull, anyone?
Do you think Republicans would mandate that MEN
donate blood and organs to save lives?
You're not saying that these pro-war, pro-death penalty, pro-gun, pro-poverty, anti-regulation, anti-women, anti-child, anti-FAMILY, anti-reality whackadoodles are hypocrites, now, are you?
You're not saying it's only women they want to control, are you?
I'm shocked...shocked, I tell you...!
As Dot Calm would say,
my virgin ears....

No Obamacare with no replacement,
which means millions uninsured.
We could go back to pre-Obamacare
levels of uninsured...or WORSE!

No marriage equality...
hard-won LGBTQ rights will be repealed.

We could lose our public schools,
which means losing our technical edge
once only rich kids have the education
and means to go to college
and become doctors, lawyers, engineers,
and other professionals.
Outsourcing, anyone?
How would you like your engineers to be Chinese working for the Chinese government? Not that Chinese engineers aren't great, but do you really think they'd have any loyalty to you as an American when it's their government paying their salaries and directing their lives? Remember, Chinese who displease their government don't go to jail--they get executed.
How would you like your doctors and lawyers to speak their own respective languages--not yours--because they're imported? How about if they didn't even live in this country? Suppose you live out in the sticks and can't even find a qualified doctor to see when you're sick or injured...Republican education policies can make it happen. If we're lucky, we might be able to get the Cuban doctors to help us using telemedicine...assuming you can afford the equipment to set it up...and assuming you know whom to call.
If not, there's always 
"just die already"--
the Republican alternative to Obamacare.
No fair pay; no equal pay for equal work.
Lilly Ledbetter can suck it.

A LOT more restrictions on women's rights.
You might not even be allowed to vote!
Hell, you might not be allowed to vote if you're in any of the Republican most-hated categories:
women, Blacks, Latinos, Muslims, Browns, poor, LGBTQ, ....

No voting rights;
more Republican gerrymandering.

Pay raises only for Congress and the corporations.
Not just pay raises but also tax cuts...
only middle class and poor Americans will pay taxes,
and they'll pay them to the rich
to honor them for sanctifying our air by breathing it.

Reduced regulation,
which means more crises like Flint's toxic water,
which is only the beginning.
Lots more boom-bust economic bubbles.
Because rich people make a killing,
literally and figuratively,
off boom-bust cycles.
It's a win-win for those sadists.

Did I mention pay raises only for Congress and the corporations? Yes, a whole lot more of those. And tax cuts. A whole lot more tax cuts. Hell, the Republican government will probably just skip the middle man and have you hand your money over directly to the corporations and the rich. Including your salary, if you work for one. You should be honored just to have a job! Who needs to be paid (unless you're already rich)? You should be grateful they allow you to pollute their sanctified air by breathing it. You should be honored they don't use you as a skeet-shooting target.

Repeal of the 1st Amendment, which means
EVANGELICAL Christianity as the national religion.
Then, the Catholic Latinos who are already here could outbreed the evangelicals and make us
a CATHOLIC nation.
Then, the Muslims who are already here could outbreed them and make us a MUSLIM nation.
(Except for the polygamists, the Mormons are only pretending to breed like Catholics.)
Won't FOX News and the Christian dominionists be SO proud once America becomes the Muslim theocracy under Sharia law that they've always envisioned?
Wait, what?!

Mass incarceration and deportation of
Blacks and Browns, including Latinos and Muslims.

More fascism...
MUCH more fascism.

Radically increased income inequality

Radically decreased individual rights--
especially in the bedroom--
except for the rich.
And Christians.

More wars of aggression; less diplomacy.
More saber-rattling and tough talk.
LOTS more bombs and guns.
Guns guns guns guns guns.
MORE and MORE guns.
Every fetus will be issued one
to protect it from its mother;
every fetus will be granted full voting rights
unless it is born
Black, female, poor, Muslim, LGBTQ,...

More terrorism--foreign and domestic.
Lots and lots of domestic terrorism
as long as it keeps those uppity women in their place!

A LOT less funding for science...
a lot more media-driven distrust of science.
Do you think the Christians
will denounce the Catholics
for "forgiving" Galileo
for showing that the earth revolves around the sun,
in direct contradiction to the Bible?

Strong commitment to global warming...
accelerating it, that is.
That plus lots of bombs
in the Middle East
if we want Apocalypse NOW...
which we will, because we'll be
a CHRISTIAN nation.

More government corruption;
less oversight.
No accountability
except for Blacks, the poor, women, Muslims,
LGBTQ, and everyone else on the Republican hit list.

Reduced consumer protections;
increased protections
for the corporations and the rich
at our expense.

Oh, and did I forget to mention
great big fat juicy
pay raises and tax rebates
for the corporations and Congress
and all their rich butt-buddies!?
Won't America be great then?

Hot off the press!
Well, last night, anyway:
Bernie wins NH primary; so does Money Boo Boo.
Frankly, I'm relieved (such as it is)
Cruz and Rubio lost.
Kasich, who's almost sane sometimes,
came in second.
If I had to vote for a Republican,
I'd vote for Eisenhower.
I still like Ike!
Ted Cruz's campaign motto:
Vote Canadian!

Sign the petition from CREDO and Daily Kos to Congress: Repeal immunity for the gun industry by passing the Equal Access to Justice for Victims of Gun Violence Act.

Does Bruised Cruz have a hernia?
Maybe that's why his face looks like that!
Or am I thinking "hemorrhoids"...?
Who told him that "TRUS" was good
to use for his campaign slogan?!
A transrectal ultrasound (TRUS) is an ultrasound technique that is used to view a man's prostate and surrounding tissues. The ultrasound transducer (probe) sends sound waves through the wall of the rectum into the prostate gland, which is located directly in front of the rectum.

Transrectal ultrasound (TRUS) - Canadian Cancer Society, eh?

I know--let's TRUS all men who want to
trans-vaginal ultrasound
women seeking abortions.
You know, just to see if they're serious
in their convictions.
No lube for them, either!

I really need to research whether this is true or not.
It would be Very Cool if it is!
Michigan's anti-sodomy crusaders
equate butt sex to bestiality.
Do they think that taking it up the ass
somehow makes you...
Welcome to Michigan:
come for the water,
stay for the all-gay legislature!

Trump wants to expand torture
with waterboarding as just the start...
Will he make prisoners listen to Sarah Palin
until their brains ooze out their ears
trying to escape...?

A word and a request
from Bernie Sanders

Greed, fraud, dishonesty, and arrogance: these are the words that best describe the reality of Wall Street today.

We can no longer tolerate an economy and a political system that have been rigged by Wall Street to benefit the wealthiest Americans in this country at the expense of everyone else. While President Obama deserves credit for getting this economy back on track after the Wall Street crash, the reality is there is a lot of unfinished business.

That's why I announced my plan for taking on Wall Street. We must break up the banks, end their casino-style gambling, and fundamentally change the approach of the financial industry to focus on helping the American people.

When I am president, we will reform Wall Street and our financial system to make it work for all Americans. I want to tell you about what I will do, then ask you to add your name to endorse our plan.

To those on Wall Street, let me be very clear. Greed is not good. In fact, the greed of Wall Street and corporate America is destroying the fabric of our nation. And here is a promise I will make as president: If Wall Street does not end its greed, we will end it for them.

As most people know, in the 1990s and later, financial interests spent billions of dollars in lobbying and campaign contributions to force through Congress the deregulation of Wall Street, the repeal of the Glass-Steagall Act, and the weakening of consumer protection laws.

They paid this money to show the American people all that they could do with that freedom. Well, they sure showed the American people. In 2008, the greed, recklessness, and illegal behavior on Wall Street nearly destroyed the U.S. and global economy. Millions of Americans lost their jobs, their homes, and their life savings.

Meanwhile, the American middle class continues to disappear, poverty is increasing, and the gap between the very rich and everyone else is growing wider and wider by the day. But the American people are catching on. They also know that a handful of people on Wall Street have extraordinary power over the economic and political life of our country.

We must act now to change that. Our goal must be to create a financial system and an economy that works for all Americans, not just a handful of billionaires.

There are eight points to my plan, and I want to go through each of them here because I think it's important for our campaign to discuss specific policies with our supporters. Some of this may seem a little in the weeds, but I trust our supporters to be able to handle this kind of policy discussion.

Here's my plan for what I will do with Wall Street when I am president:

Break up huge financial institutions in the first year of my administration. Within the first 100 days of my administration, I will require the Secretary of the Treasury to establish a “Too Big to Fail” list of commercial banks, shadow banks, and insurance companies whose failure would pose a catastrophic risk to the U.S. economy without a taxpayer bailout. Within one year, my administration will break these institutions up so that they no longer pose a grave threat to the economy.

Reinstate a 21st Century Glass-Steagall Act to clearly separate traditional banking from risky investment banking and insurance services. It is not enough to tell Wall Street to "cut it out," propose a few new rules and slap on some fines. Under my administration, financial institutions will no longer be too big to fail or too big to manage. Wall Street cannot continue to be an island unto itself, gambling trillions in risky financial instruments. If an institution is too big to fail, it is too big to exist.

End too-big-to-jail. We live in a country today that has an economy that is rigged, a campaign finance system which is corrupt, and a criminal justice system which often does not dispense justice. The average American sees kids being arrested and sometimes even jailed for possessing marijuana. But when it comes to Wall Street executives — some of the most wealthy and powerful people in this country whose illegal behavior hurt millions of Americans — somehow nothing happens to them. No jail time. No police record. No justice.

Not one major Wall Street executive has been prosecuted for causing the near collapse of our entire economy. That will change under my administration. “Equal Justice Under Law” will not just be words engraved on the entrance of the Supreme Court. It will be the standard that applies to Wall Street and all Americans.

Establish a tax on Wall Street to discourage reckless gambling and encourage productive investments in the job-creating economy. We will use the revenue from this tax to make public colleges and universities tuition free. During the financial crisis, the middle class of this country bailed out Wall Street. Now, it’s Wall Street’s turn to help the middle class.

Cap Credit Card Interest Rates and ATM Fees. We have got to stop financial institutions from ripping off the American people by charging sky-high interest rates and outrageous fees. In my view, it is unacceptable that Americans are paying a $4 or $5 fee each time they go to the ATM. And it is unacceptable that millions of Americans are paying credit card interest rates of 20 or 30 percent.

The Bible has a term for this practice. It's called usury. And in The Divine Comedy, Dante reserved a special place in the Seventh Circle of Hell for sinners who charged people usurious interest rates. Today, we don't need the hellfire and the pitchforks, we don't need the rivers of boiling blood, but we do need a national usury law.

We need to cap interest rates on credit cards and consumer loans at 15 percent. I would also cap ATM fees at $2.

Allow Post Offices to Offer Banking Services. We also need to give Americans affordable banking options. The reality is that, unbelievably, millions of low-income Americans live in communities where there are no normal banking services. Today, if you live in a low-income community and you need to cash a check or get a loan to pay for a car repair or a medical emergency, where do you go? You go to a payday lender who could charge an interest rate of over 300 percent and trap you into a vicious cycle of debt. That is unacceptable.

We need to stop payday lenders from ripping off millions of Americans. Post offices exist in almost every community in our country. One important way to provide decent banking opportunities for low-income communities is to allow the U.S. Postal Service to engage in basic banking services, and that's what I will fight for.

Reform Credit Rating Agencies. We cannot have a safe and sound financial system if we cannot trust the credit agencies to accurately rate financial products. The only way we can restore that trust is to make sure credit rating agencies cannot make a profit from Wall Street. Under my administration, we will turn for-profit credit rating agencies into non-profit institutions, independent from Wall Street. No longer will Wall Street be able to pick and choose which credit agency will rate their products.

Reform the Federal Reserve. We need to structurally reform the Federal Reserve to make it a more democratic institution responsive to the needs of ordinary Americans, not just the billionaires on Wall Street. It is unacceptable that the Federal Reserve has been hijacked by the very bankers it is in charge of regulating. When Wall Street was on the verge of collapse, the Federal Reserve acted with a fierce sense of urgency to save the financial system. We need the Fed to act with the same boldness to combat the unemployment crisis and fulfill its full employment mandate.

So my message to you is straightforward: I’ll rein in Wall Street's reckless behavior so they can’t crash our economy again.

Will Wall Street like me? No. Will they begin to play by the rules if I’m president? You better believe it.

That is our plan to create an economy that works for all Americans, not just a handful of billionaires. If you agree with what we want to do, add your name to say that you stand with me.

No president alone, not Bernie Sanders or anyone else, can effectively address the crises facing the working families of this country without a powerful grassroots movement. When we stand together, there is nothing we cannot accomplish.

Thank you for standing with me.

In solidarity,

Bernie Sanders

Quien es mas macho:
God or Allah?
That's like asking which color is prettier:
blue or azul?

Wasn't the personal income tax rate 90%, too...? Or instead? I'll look it up when I get a mo'--Google it yourself in the mean time. And yet, somehow, even with that legendary 90% tax rate, all those poor rich people scraped by. Unlike today, where they now insist on [cue Carl Sagan] BILLIONS and BILLIONS lest they throw a Trumper Tantrum...!

Jesus said that only hypocrites pray in public.
(Matthew 6:5)
The National Prayer Breakfast
is a wonderful opportunity
for Americans to gather together
and tell Jesus
to kindly stick a sock in it!
-- Mrs. Betty Bowers

PETITION: Denounce climate change deniers >>

The evidence is hard to ignore: Climate change is very real.

But some extremists like one of Dr. Raul Ruiz’s opponents won’t even acknowledge that this dire threat even exists!

Please add your name now to stand with Dr. Raul Ruiz and a solution for climate change >>

FACT: 2015 was the hottest year on Earth since scientists started keeping track in the 1800s. El Niño is showing extreme weather patterns here in the desert.

If we don’t take action immediately, the effects of climate change will be irreversible.

But some extremist politicians -- including one of our opponents -- not only block action, but they refuse to even acknowledge that climate change exists!

We need to keep climate change deniers out of political office. Will you sign on to denounce climate change deniers this election?

Just last month, this same opponent claimed that the impact of carbon emissions was “hardly a settled science.”

We already knew he was out-of-touch with the needs of Southern California’s hard-working families.

But these latest remarks on climate change show just how radical his views are.

So please, sign your name today and denounce the views of climate change deniers:

Thank you for your support,

Team Ruiz

New rule:
if you hate government,
you're not allowed to run for government!

Tea Party Republican Crescent Hardy wants abortion banned, favors a $2.75 minimum wage, and supports
Cliven Bundy?

Tea Party Republican Cresent Hardy has been in Congress for less than two years, but he’s already racked up a pretty sizable list of dangerous positions that hurt working families.

Here are Hardy’s top five disastrous positions:

  1. Hardy echoed Mitt Romney’s remarks about 47% of Americans not paying taxes, saying, “Can I say that without getting in trouble like President…err…Governor Romney?” Give $5 if you stand with working families.
  2. Hardy co-sponsored an abortion ban that could have put doctors in prison. Give $5 if you support Planned Parenthood.
  3. Hardy voiced his opposition to raising the federal minimum wage by stating that he once worked for $2.75 an hour … in the 1970s. Give $5 if you want to raise the minimum wage to $15/hr.
  4. Hardy called unions “somewhere between a mob and a gang” and has tried to cripple teachers unions. Give $5 if you support unions and teachers.
  5. Hardy stood side by side with extremist rancher Cliven Bundy and called BLM workers who protect America’s national monuments “an example of federal overreach.” Give $5 if you want the violence on public lands to stop.

We can’t afford two more years of backward-looking, outdated policies.

If you've saved your information with ActBlue Express, your donation to Democrat Ruben Kihuen will go through immediately:

- Ruben

Paid for by Ruben Kihuen for Congress
No no no, you naughty Republicans!
The only reason you want your grubby mitts
on our government is so you can break it.
BAD Republicans!
Go sit in the corner!!!
...This is why we can't have nice things.

He's also a sanctimonious lying hypocrite, just like his equally distasteful father--but who's counting?
Have you EVER heard
a Christian, Republican, or priest
tell MEN to keep their pants zipped?
Yeah--me neither!
They only blame women for sex.
Like Hucksterbee and Limpballs.
Well, guess what, guys...
If you don't like
women having birth control or abortions,
then it's
for you!
Don't get teste with me--I'll get snippy with you!

OK, this is all fun and games, but don't forget Snopes!
Oh, my bleeding gums....
-- Dot Calm

I was born a poor Black child.
-- Dot Calm,
quoting Steve Martin,
playing Navin R. Johnson
in "The Jerk"

If you listen long enough,
you'll hear my Tea Party Christian friend
spout every single Faux Noise talking point.
It's like holding up a seashell to your ear
and hearing the ocean...
only hateful, toxic, and inaccurate.

Daily Kos

  • Football star's ex-girlfriend begged valet: 'Please don't let him take me. I'm scared for my life.'
  • Xenophobic, gun-loving, washed-up rock star shares Facebook post blaming Jews for gun regulation
  • Donald Trump defends 'pussy' comments at rally: 'It was a great moment'
  • Like the Daily Kos Recommended email? Chip in $1 to support the team that brings progressive news to your inbox every day.
  • Cartoon: Corn candidates
  • The Maryland legislature just gave 40,000 people the right to vote
  • Marco Rubio would make a fine president, he just has a 'propensity to panic in moments of crisis'
  • Oregon Sheriffs' Assoc. will 'look into' conduct of 'constitutional' sheriff who met with Bundy gang
  • Adjustments being made to criminal justice bill after Tom Cotton pitches fit    
  • Militants get around FBI communications block, release new crop of crazy videos from the standoff    
  • Add your name: Join Daily Kos and Donna Edwards in saying NO to corporate special interests and the TPP.    
  • President Obama ignores Republican temper tantrum, presents optimistic, ambitious budget    
  • Cartoon: Neuron heroes of the Super Bowl    
  • The importance of fighting with someone on something    
  • Tennessee's welfare drug-testing program is wasting money and not finding anybody on drugs    
  • Young black men in Chicago: Out of work, out of school, and out of luck    
  • Bette Midler tweets Catch-22 quote by Joseph Heller describing GOP candidate(s) today    
  • Catholic Online asks Christians: 'Please stop doing this terrible thing'
  • Bette Midler tweets Catch-22 quote by Joseph Heller describing GOP candidate(s) today    
  • Marco Rubio walks away after New Hampshire man reminds him marriage equality is the law    
  • Catholic Online asks Christians: 'Please stop doing this terrible thing'    
  • A neurologist wrote an article trying to explain why Ted Cruz's face is so bothersome    
  • Sign if you agree with NARAL: We can't wait until one more patient, doctor or nurse is hurt before we take action. Clinic violence is domestic terrorism.    
  • Cartoon: Trump loses to a Mexican    
  • Cartoon: Feel The Burns, Oregon    
  • Republicans abandon all pretense of respecting President Obama, refuse to hear his budget proposal    
  • Steve King pulling Ted Cruz's strings like a real life puppet master is the best thing on Vine    
  • Fox News and Rudy Giuliani have a case of the vapors over ... Beyonce!    
  • Bernie Sanders doesn't back down to Chuck Todd 'The business model of Wall Street is fraud'    
  • Like the Daily Kos Recommended email? Chip in $1 to support the team that brings progressive news to your inbox every day.    
  • Marco Rubio is no moderate    
  • Couple forgo buying dream boat and decide to put entire kindergarten class through college    
  • The courage of Autherine Lucy    
  • Appetite for destruction: Biology, psychology, socialization, and the Republican mind    
  • Hillary Clinton pays a lot in taxes. She’s proposing to pay even more.    
  • Wow. Charles Blow goes there in op-ed    
  • GOP House members elected in 2010 fleeing like rats from a sinking ship
  • Wow. Charles Blow goes there in op-ed    
  • GOP House members elected in 2010 fleeing like rats from a sinking ship    
  • Cartoon: The Trump-supporting union member    
  • Like the Daily Kos Recommended email? Chip in $1 to support the team that brings progressive news to your inbox every day.    
  • Reporters gasp in outrage that Hillary Clinton dares raise her voice, don't notice men shouting    
  • Howard Kurtz saw a liberal on television, and it's freaking him out    
  • Chris Christie just privatized New Jersey's water. Good luck with that, New Jersey    
  • Lawyer for Oregon standoff 'shock jock' cites Trump's inflammatory speech in defense of his client    
  • Veteran pens scathing New York Times op-ed on Trump and chickenhawk pols who exploit veterans    
  • Young, gifted and black: Killed in police custody in Texas    
  • An extreme minority is using fear and intimidation to target women and medical professionals across the country. Join NARAL in calling on the DOJ to investigate clinic violence as terrorism.    
  • Cartoon: Toxicity    
  • Phoenix forced to ban city council prayer sessions entirely because of Satanic Temple    
  • Antarctica's Scar Inlet Ice Shelf is anticipated to shatter by the end of March    
  • Florida Republicans advance bill allowing governor to take 'military action' against refugees    
  • Iraq veteran assists would-be robber in reconsidering career choice    
  • Socialism, fascism, and other philosophies conservatives don't understand
  • Billionaire bewildered that American voters are angry    
  • A Florida judge sentenced a man to 60 years in prison for this?    
  • Cartoon: If Flint's water problem happened to rich people    
  • Sign the petition: Stand with the Planned Parenthood Action Fund and Hillary Clinton to support Women's health.    
  • Dixie Chicks' Natalie Maines flips off Ted Cruz before kicking off first tour in 10 years    
  • Anne Frank's stepsister who survived Auschwitz has strong words for Donald Trump    
  • Militants bulldoze through Native American archeological site, share video rifling through artifacts    
  • Melissa Harris-Perry narrowly escaped being attacked last night at an Iowa hotel during caucuses    
  • Ted Cruz's Logo: Hilariously Appropriate    
  • An open letter to Sarah Palin from Republican former US Navy Officer & Marine Chris Mark    
  • Pick up your copy of Brown Is The New White, a new book by one of the leading civil rights organizers in the country, that presents a compelling, data-based argument that the Democratic Party needs to refocus its resources on people of color and the rest of Democratic base.    
  • How to really make America great again: Get rid of 'the dumbest idea in the world'    
  • One billionaire's 'Megayacht' destroyed 80% of West Bay's protected Caribbean coral reef    
  • It turns out Donald Trump's father was the racist landlord Woody Guthrie hated   
  • A tie and a warning    
  • Flight attendant tells how she learned to recognize human trafficking and what you can do    
  • Man's obituary is the quote of the day: 'In lieu of flowers, please do not vote for Donald Trump'    
  • Largest online Christian organization condemns Ted Cruz for claiming Christians won him Iowa Caucus
  • Cartoon: Stuff Jesus said    
  • You won’t see Hillary Clinton in the same light ever again    
  • Obama v. Reagan: Fun comparison I did to piss off wingnuts on Reagan’s birthday    
  • Sign the petition with House Majority PAC: Demand Congress pass Elizabeth Warrens's emergency boost for seniors. Their social security cost of living increase isn't happening this year.    
  • Donald Trump to Detroit autoworkers: You make too much money    
  • ‘The pitchforks ARE coming:’ A billionaire warns his fellow oligarchs what is coming down the pipe    
  • New England Journal of Medicine exposes truths about Planned Parenthood & the GOP    
  • Teacher’s resignation letter: ‘My profession no longer exists’    
  • Living with Denmark’s democratic socialism    
  • A guide to the conservative movement in one handy chart    
  • A progressive pope is driving the wingnuts batty    
  • Like the Daily Kos Recommended email? Chip in $1 to support the team that brings progressive news to your inbox every day.    
  • Another study says watching Fox News makes you dumber    
  • 75 ways socialism has improved America    
  • Here’s an ad about R--skins that its makers don’t have the money to show at Sunday’s Super Bowl    
  • Hearing Bohemian Rhapsody on a 110-year-old fairground organ is perfect    
  • Black history is American history: Books you should read

  • ********************************************
    My Tea Party Christian friend
    really does have a good heart...
    unlike the politicians he votes for
    and the corporations and 1%ers they represent.
    The indoctrination he underwent as a child
    shot holes in his critical thinking
    so that the propaganda
    had an easy way in.
    He is more victim than perpetrator,
    but that won't stop him
    from victimizing the rest of us
    given half a chance.
    It's amazing
    how much destruction people can wreak
    even when they don't
    mean anyone any harm.
    Intellectual honesty, anyone?
    Bueller? BUELLER?!

    Marco Roboto's campaign slogan:
    Robots have feelings, too!

    Robert Reich, AlterNet
    New Hampshire results challenge the dominance of centrists.  READ MORE»

    Alexandra Rosenmann, AlterNet
    The Ron Howard-directed mockumentary was released after Trump's huge win in New Hampshire. READ MORE»

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    Chomsky says today's Clinton Democrats are yesterday's moderate Republicans. READ MORE»

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    Is Bernie Sanders our next openly resentful secretary of state? READ MORE»

    By H. A. Goodman, Huffington Post
    Clinton has failed Warren’s ‘money-in-politics’ litmus test — and now the Democratic Party is splitting in two. READ MORE»

    By Amanda Marcotte, Salon
    But the remarkable thing about Trump’s speech is it’s not actually that different from boilerplate Republican nonsense. READ MORE»

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    On World Cancer Day, activists fighting cancer condemned the corporate-friendly mega-deal as a 'death sentence.' READ MORE»

    By Jack Mirkinson, Salon
    One is a Democratic Socialist, the other a xenophobic blowhard—but they've both sent shockwaves through the system. READ MORE»

    By Phillip Smith, AlterNet
    A 1969 anti-drug film short from Lockheed Aircraft is unintentionally hilarious.  READ MORE»

    By Mary Dejevsky, The Guardian
    The Defense Department's message is unambiguous: Russia is a much bigger threat than ISIL. READ MORE»

    By Keith Knight, AlterNet
    Governor Snyder should watch out for angry parents.  READ MORE»

    By Jonathan Jong, The Conversation US
    Contemplating our own mortality may open Pandora’s box. READ MORE»
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    "Republicans laid out an all-you-can-eat banquet of crazy." READ MORE»

    Heather Cox Richardson, Salon
    For years, GOP intellectuals rationalized for the loons. Now it's too late for the men of ideas to regain authority. READ MORE»

    Alexandra Rosenmann, AlterNet
    GOP debates, once tanking, have soared to new heights, thanks to (who would have guessed it) Chris Christie. READ MORE»

    By Ben Jacobs, The Guardian
    On the eve of the primary, Donald Trump repeated an offensive remark from a member of the crowd about Ted Cruz’s position on waterboarding READ MORE»

    By Alexandra Rosenmann, AlterNet
    "Bernie Sanders is a decent, honest New Dealer." READ MORE»

    By Joan McCarter, Daily Kos
    Budget committee refuses to invite Office of Management and Budget director to testify.  READ MORE»

    By Jen Sorensen, AlterNet
    President Cruz? Noooooooooooooo. READ MORE»

    By Clara Chaisson, OnEarth Magazine
    This unaired Doritos “ad” calls out the company’s role in deforestation. READ MORE»

    By David Edwards, Raw Story
    Fox News and Rudy Giuliani need to calm down about the singer's halftime show. READ MORE»
    Les Leopold, AlterNet
    The typical American has to work five years to earn that much. READ MORE»

    Maya Rockeymoore, AlterNet
    American history has not created wealth for most. READ MORE»

    Gary Legum, Salon
    Rubio's team must be hoping the electorate is so distracted by Trump & Cruz it won't listen to him too closely. READ MORE»

    By Sarah Lazare, AlterNet
    Clinton does not have a monopoly on feminism. READ MORE»

    By Robin Scher, AlterNet
    They're called first-world problems for a reason. READ MORE»

    By David Sheen, AlterNet
    Netanyahu’s right-wing government is treating Natali Vaxberg Cohen's art as a criminal act READ MORE»

    By Thom Hartmann, AlterNet
    What the political battles of the late 18th century can teach us about people power. READ MORE»

    By Vijay Prashad, Discover Society
    Saudi Arabia stands in the way of meaningful progress.  READ MORE»

    By Tom Engelhardt, Tom Dispatch
    The U.S. Military is far from successful globally. In fact, failure is it's middle name.  READ MORE»

    By Danielle Nierenberg, Catherine Lamb, Food Tank
    These are the most important food policy questions that every 2016 presidential candidate needs to answer. READ MORE»

    By Sharda Sekaran, AlterNet
    Moore encourages American policy makers to "invade" Portugal and import its smart approach to drug use back here to improve our quality of life. READ MORE»

    By Tom Boggioni, Raw Story
    And Michigan already has an existing state law that punishes anal sex with up to a 15-year sentence in prison! READ MORE»
    Sarah Lazare, AlterNet
    While fighter jets soared overhead, armed troops patrolled Levi Stadium. READ MORE»

    Robert Reich, Robert Reich's Blog
    "Some establishment Democrats ... have grown comfortable with the way things are. They’d rather not rock the boat they’re safely in." READ MORE»

    Alexandra Rosenmann, AlterNet
    "When the needs of the people filter on up top, we change America," Sanders said. READ MORE»

    Republicans show no sign of learning from experience. READ MORE»

    By David Freedlander, Salon
    In N.H., independent voters can vote in either primary — and Trump could snag some of the voters Sanders needs. READ MORE»

    By Lorraine Chow, EcoWatch
    The list of prominent voices and celebrities taking action against the horrific water crisis continues to grow. READ MORE»

    By Brian McFadden, AlterNet
    It's still not too late to get your Trump insult keychain. READ MORE»
    Michael Bader, DMH, AlterNet
    Krugman wants people to be rational and pragmatic like he is. They aren't—and sometimes that is a good thing.  READ MORE»

    Adam Johnson, AlterNet
    To understand Trump's brand of disjointed white nationalism, you have to understand the popular right wing radio host.  READ MORE»

    Ann Jones, Tom Dispatch
    Denmark, Norway and Sweden are all thriving under democratic socialism. Why is it so difficult for us to embrace? READ MORE»

    By Bill Curry, Salon
    Sanders has ended the coronation and fired up the grass roots. Now Clinton's electability argument is crumbling too. READ MORE»

    By Robert Faturechi, ProPublica
    Internal memos reveal the slimy tactics political donors use to hide their campaign contributions from the public. READ MORE»

    By Valerie Tarico, AlterNet
    Advocates for sexual and reproductive empowerment say the glitch was unacceptable. READ MORE»

    By Sonia Saraiya, Salon
    Salon talks to the "Daily Show" alum on the set of her new TBS show, where she has no plans to hold back. READ MORE»

    By Erin Aubry Kaplan, University Press of New England
    Obama's had unprecedented importance for black people. We even forgive his blunders, because he's one of the family. READ MORE»

    By Phillip Smith, AlterNet
    A VA policy that bars doctors from recommending medical marijuana to patients is set to expire. Some members of Congress want to see it reversed.  READ MORE»

    By Patrick Cockburn, CounterPunch
    The Syrian war is at a crucial stage. How does Turkey fit in?  READ MORE»

    By Sarah van Gelder, YES! Magazine
    Author Florence Williams and her daughter discovered they had high levels of toxins—like flame retardants—in their bodies. READ MORE»

    By David Edmonds, Raw Story
    Marco Rubio doubles down on his rabid anti-abortion position.  READ MORE»

    By Claire Bernish, The Free Thought Project
    A story too sleazy to be believed.  READ MORE»

    Ben Jacobs, Sabrina Siddiqui, The Guardian
    The Republican candidate found himself on the receiving end of Chris Christie’s strong performance during Saturday debate days before New Hampshire primary. READ MORE»

    Janet Allon, AlterNet
    Many on the right were completely undone by Obama's mosque visit. READ MORE»

    Larry Schwartz, AlterNet
    Lies are sometimes necessary evils when presidents want to get something accomplished.  READ MORE»

    By Jill Richardson, OtherWords
    It should come as no surprise that that emotions can impact physical health. READ MORE»

    By Jason Wilson, AlterNet
    LaVoy Finicum’s ultraconservative Mormon beliefs help explain his radical actions. READ MORE»

    By Chauncey DeVega, Salon
    Trump may have finished second in Iowa, but he's far from finished. His base is as fearful as ever. READ MORE»

    By Reynard Loki, AlterNet
    In his latest album, the longtime champion of farmers’ rights offers a sharp criticism of the agrochemical giant. READ MORE»

    By Bill Fletcher Jr., AlterNet
    A decision against the California Teachers Association is a decision in favor of greed.  READ MORE»

    By Nafeez Ahmed , Middle East Eye
    The wars in Libya, Iraq and Afghanistan failed because short-sighted Western interests trumped the needs of the people. READ MORE»

    By Phillip Smith, AlterNet
    The great social experiment is underway. How is it going? READ MORE»

    By Jason Best, TakePart
    But don't expect a new analysis of glyphosate use to derail Monsanto's plans for its next-generation herbicides. READ MORE»

    By Tom Boggioni, Raw Story
    It's not just you, it's science. READ MORE»
    Adam Lee, AlterNet
    The atheist community has a lamentable tendency to make the same mistakes over and over. READ MORE»

    Carrie Weisman, AlterNet
    The FBI is working to combat trafficking during this year’s Super Bowl. But is it really necessary? READ MORE»

    Kali Holloway, AlterNet
    A petition calling for news outlets to stop calling the organization ISIS has a whopping 63,000 signatures. READ MORE»

    By Paul Blest, Salon
    The Vermont senator's Iowa showing indicates that something is changing in American politics. READ MORE»

    By Aviva Chomsky, Tom Dispatch
    The issue of long hours, little pay and no vacation for delivery drivers is finally out of the shadows. READ MORE»

    By Cody Cain, Salon
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    Hundreds of prisoners in the Genesee County Jail in Flint, Michigan, had no option but to drink and shower in the contaminated city water. READ MORE»

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    Studies suggest that diet can have powerful effects on behavior. READ MORE»

    By Bethania Palma Markus, Raw Story
    Caught between a rock and hard place. READ MORE»

    What? You made it all the way down here?
    Then here is a treat for you!