Repub Venality Open Thread: Mick Mulvaney Gets Caught Telling the Truth

They’d throw him off the GOP Titanic for this, but Mulvaney’s the Acting Head of Everything They’ve Still Got… and possibly the only one who’s figured out how to work the light switches in the Oval Office.

103 replies
  1. 1
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    I am shocked, shocked I tell you.

  2. 2
    MattF says:

    IOK…

  3. 3
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    Farmers at stops throughout the eastern and western legs of the normally tranquil crop tour have expressed frustration with USDA – though less so with President Donald Trump, who they largely voted for and continue to support.

    Uh guys? It’s chump’s USDA. Jus’ sayin’…

    Still, most farmers, like Bill Baylis of Ohio who was on the eastern leg of the tour, condemned the threats. “Yes, these are challenging times. But this, threatening harm like this? It is not acceptable,” he said.

    Richard W. Guse, a grain farmer from Waseca, Minnesota, who was also on the tour, worried about the potential damage to farmers’ reputation. “It’s a very emotional year, and this now reflects horribly on farmers,” he said.

    I don’t think you quite understand what reflects horribly.

  4. 4
    Baud says:

    2021-22. Dems start long, slow process of digging us out of GOP hole.

    2023. Republican regain control of Congress because Dems are too timid and feckless and slow.

  5. 5
    hueyplong says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: “If only the Fuehrer knew about this administrative abuse, he would put a stop to it.”

  6. 6
    rikyrah says:

    This is the funniest breakdown of the Chick-fil-A vs. Popeye’s Chicken Sandwiches that I’ve seen yet.

    😂😂😂😂

    And that’s that.🤣🤣🤣🤣 https://t.co/r7qi77EXa1

    — shannon sharpe (@ShannonSharpe) August 22, 2019

  7. 7
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @rikyrah: Heh.

  8. 8
    rikyrah says:

    Barack and Michelle Obama ‘to buy $14.85 million Martha’s Vineyard estate from Boston Celtics owner Wyc Grousbeck’ after spending summer there and falling in love with sprawling beachfront estate

    The 29-acre estate is on the market includes a 7000 sq ft house with seven bedrooms and nine bathrooms
    Built in 2001, it also has a pool, chef’s kitchen, outdoor fireplace, and two guest wings, and a large sundeck
    Last year, the Obamas sold their summer home on the island for $15 million, having spent seven out of right summers there while Barack was President
    By BRIDIE PEARSON-JONES FOR MAILONLINE

    PUBLISHED: 09:35 EDT, 22 August 2019 | UPDATED: 09:44 EDT, 22 August 2019

  9. 9
    Yarrow says:

    “Trade wars are good and easy to win.”

  10. 10
    JPL says:

    @rikyrah: Sweet. Fox will be outraged because ………………………

  11. 11
    Yarrow says:

    @rikyrah:

    having spent seven out of right summers there

    Interesting…

  12. 12
    Brachiator says:

    @Baud:

    2023. Republican regain control of Congress because Dems are too timid and feckless and slow

    What bold and brave programs should Democrats be shooting for that would make them eternally loved by citizens?

    The Republicans succeed largely by convincing people that there are simple solutions to complex issues and by pushing retrograde social policies that give some people exactly what they want.

  13. 13
    Keith P. says:

    How were we supposed to pay for Greenland?

  14. 14
    germy says:

    Any recession will be blamed on Democrats. It’ll be Warren’s fault.

  15. 15
    SFAW says:

    for what he hopes will be only a “moderate and short” recession.

    I’m so old, I can remember when some money person — Larry Lessig, maybe? — said Iraq was going to cost more than $300 B, and he got fired because BushCo thought he was making them look bad by “overstating” how much it would cost. Good times, good times.

  16. 16
    germy says:

    @Keith P.: He wasn’t actually going to pay for it.

  17. 17
    SFAW says:

    @germy:

    It’ll be Warren’s fault.

    Even if the Traitor-in-Chief (FSM forbid) wins, he will blame any recession on the Dems, esp. Warren, Obummer, and Hitlary

  18. 18
    germy says:

    “If you want to know what God thinks of money, just look at the people he gave it to.”
    — Dorothy Parker, born on this day in 1893. https://t.co/DFc6NIhCxM pic.twitter.com/bVyn72ZQ4N— Lapham’s Quarterly (@laphamsquart) August 22, 2019

  19. 19
    SFAW says:

    @germy:

    He wasn’t actually going to pay for it.

    No kidding. I can’t recall the last time he actually paid for anything he bought, except as part of a court judgment.

  20. 20
    The Moar You Know says:

    Telling steel workers the economy is fine while whispering to jillionaire donors that they should invest in canned food and shotguns.

    Can’t wait for jillionaire hunting season to open. Where do you get the tags?

  21. 21
    rikyrah says:

    The Berners are out today defending Sanders double speak. Before they try- 1.Union members are telling them the proposal has no value. 2. There is no money – even in the best estimates savings would not exist for the first ten years as new systems cost
    https://t.co/f9NuDxQFst

    — BlueSteelDC (@BlueSteelDC) August 22, 2019

  22. 22
    rikyrah says:

    Receipts

    “Sister” Nina didn’t make a single fall campaign appearance for Hillary Clinton but she did attend a “People’s convention” of disgruntled Bernie-or Bust-folk and shared a stage with Russian asset Jill Stein who tried to recruit Nina for her running mate.

    — skeptical brotha 🌈 (@skepticalbrotha) August 22, 2019

  23. 23
    rikyrah says:

    Trump admin coverage maxim: Watch what they do, not what they say

    Rachel Maddow remarks on the awkwardness of not being able to believe anything the president of the United States says and notes members of the media increasingly coming to the realization that the truth is better found in what the Trump administration does than what it says.

  24. 24

    @Keith P.: Mexico would pay for it. //

    @Brachiator: I don’t believe Baud was saying it’s good that our elections are cyclical like this. He’s just making an observation. It does seem that off-year elections favour the opposition to the presidency in our system, on the whole. 1998 and 2002 are the only recent exceptions, IIRC. This results in some seriously screwed outcomes, because the Framers (1) didn’t plan for political parties (2) and especially didn’t plan for one of them to be comprised entirely of sociopaths who have no regard for empirical reality.

    This is exacerbated by our use of first-past-the-post voting, which results in a two-party system and makes our political system perhaps more volatile than it would otherwise be: if there were more realistic options for various political offices, people’s votes probably wouldn’t swing as far as they currently do when they get disgruntled. If voters aren’t feeling the effects of a recovery after two years, the current system really gives them very few ways of registering their displeasure, of which the most widely known is: vote for another political party. At the moment, there are two realistic options.

    (I propose replacing FPTP with approval voting, if anyone asks. It’s simple to explain – each voter votes for as many candidates as they like; the candidate with the most votes still wins – but essentially not prone to the spoiler effect, making third parties no longer the sole province of cranks and ratfuckers.)

    Anyway, the Republicans also succeed in large part because they cheat. We can’t forget that. A lot of their “wins” have been aided by voter disenfranchisement, much of which has at least bordered on the outright criminal. This was certainly the case in 2000, 2004, 2010, 2014, and 2016, and probably in other years as well. (I live in Florida, which has been Ground Zero for a lot of this horseshit.)

    Ceterum censeo factionem Republicanam esse delendam.

  25. 25
    rikyrah says:

    Trump seeks capability to indefinitely detain immigrant families

    Rachel Maddow outlines recent anti-immigrant proposals by the Donald Trump administration that are united by their intentional cruelty, legal dubiousness, and dual function as a Trump 2020 campaign appeal to his base.

  26. 26
    lollipopguild says:

    @hueyplong: “If only the Czar knew………”

  27. 27
    rikyrah says:

    Another cruel Trump immigration proposal, another legal challenge

    Lee Gelernt, deputy director of the ACLU Immigrants’ Rights Project, talks with Rachel Maddow about the legal challenges already filed against Trump administration immigration proposals, and the new legal challenge coming against the Trump administration’s bid for the ability to detain immigrant families indefinitely.

  28. 28
    Yarrow says:

    @Keith P.: The Trump way: borrow money from someone else, buy it, threaten them later and get the price way down, then walk out leaving someone else holding the bag.

  29. 29
    The Moar You Know says:

    I’m so old, I can remember when some money person — Larry Lessig, maybe? — said Iraq was going to cost more than $300 B, and he got fired because BushCo thought he was making them look bad by “overstating” how much it would cost. Good times, good times.

    @SFAW: He should have been fired for being off by an order of magnitude. For a while, that little adventure was running 200 billion a month.

  30. 30
    Yarrow says:

    @rikyrah:

    Trump admin coverage maxim: Watch what they do, not what they say

    Always. Their words are often designed to outrage and shift focus.

  31. 31
    randy khan says:

    About Mulvaney becoming a budget hawk again. First, something tells me he won’t be rejoining our government as an elected official, so he’ll be doing it from some safe perch like Fox News.

    Or he’ll explain that the guy in the Trump Administration was actually his evil twin, Nick Mulvaney.

  32. 32

    @Brachiator:
    I am 90% sure Baud is being bitterly sarcastic in expressing how voters expect Democrats to create an instant Utopia, and punish us if we don’t.

  33. 33
    L85NJGT says:

    @OzarkHillbilly:

    Ill presidente is collapsing the ethanol industry by handing out EPA waivers to small gasoline refineries, because their revenues don’t justify any new investments, like adding biofuels (ethanol) to the blend. He’s also jackhammering food grade ethanol production by screwing hard liquor exports to China.

    So midwest plants are shutting down, corn prices will tank, etc.

  34. 34
    L85NJGT says:

    @Yarrow:

    They always grab for the cash on the table vs. long term investments.

  35. 35
    Brachiator says:

    I think that recession woes still reflect old thinking that we have a conventional president dealing with conventional economic issues. No one knows whether a recession might occur or whether it might be mild or severe, or whether it might happen soon enough to have an impact on the presidential election.

    But whatever happens, any Trump reaction will make it worse because Trump is a bumbling amateur entirely out of his league who will discount any expert advice and who will insist that his cabinet and advisers lie and push childish proposals that soothe Trump’s ego but otherwise do nothing.

    At this point it is clear that a panicky Trump deals with the economy the same way he tried to bail out his failing hotels and casinos. His tax cuts are giveaways to the rich that are busting the deficit. Perversely, his trade wars and tariffs hurt business and dilute the value of corporate and business tax cuts. And Trump reacted to the folly of his own trade wars by coming up with a $12 billion corporate welfare scheme to bail out farmers, many of whom are complaining to the USDA that they are not getting enough free government money. Oh, and committing massive welfare fraud by taking more money than they should.

    At the same time, the tariffs are de facto tax increases on individuals, reducing their ability to pay for goods and services.

    On top of all this, Trump is blaming the Fed for his own mistakes and contemplating more budget busting tax cuts to soften the impact of his earlier bad decisions.

    Don’t worry about future recessions; worry about the economic mess that the Orange Fraudster is creating every day he continues in office.

  36. 36
    Brachiator says:

    @Frankensteinbeck:

    I am 90% sure Baud is being bitterly sarcastic in expressing how voters expect Democrats to create an instant Utopia, and punish us if we don’t.

    Makes sense.

    We need to get rid of voters.

  37. 37
    StringOnAStick says:

    @Brachiator: People are noticing. My friend the independent annuity sales person is so busy there’s barely enough hours in the day. Mostly investors who are close to retirement of there already, realizing they don’t have enough years left to dig out of an ugly stock market again. 2008 wasn’t long ago and people remember.

  38. 38
    J R in WV says:

    @The Moar You Know:

    I’m so old, I can remember when some money person — Larry Lessig, maybe? — said Iraq was going to cost more than $300 B, and he got fired because BushCo thought he was making them look bad by “overstating” how much it would cost. Good times, good times.

    @SFAW: He should have been fired for being off by an order of magnitude. For a while, that little adventure was running 200 billion a month.

    Well, but you're leaving out the part where we were going to get all the oil in the Middle East, after winning that war and introducing Democratic government all over that area of the world. After which the newly elected leaders were going to give W Bush all the sweet crude oil he wanted.

    Right?

  39. 39
    StringOnAStick says:

    @Brachiator: I recall NPR grabbing a sound bite from a guy who voted for Obama because he was unemployed and viciously turning on the POTUS when 1 month after Obama’s inauguration the economy wasn’t fixed because he was still unemployed. Mid-30’s white guy crying bitter tears that his magic unicorn wasn’t hand delivered as the country was still falling into the worst economic downturn since the Great Depression. I would like to make college free, and MANDATORY.

  40. 40
    lumpkin says:

    There is exactly zero reason to believe anything Mulvaney says about anything.

  41. 41
    SFAW says:

    @The Moar You Know:

    He should have been fired for being off by an order of magnitude. For a while, that little adventure was running 200 billion a month.

    Yeah, it was starting to become obvious (at the time) that he was underestimating. But the funny thing was, when he put forward that estimate, Cheney and company were still saying it would “only” be about $150 B total, and so Lessig (or whoever) saying 300 was considered blasphemy by BushCo.

  42. 42
    Yarrow says:

    I don’t think it’s a good sign that #SignsYoureGettingFired is trending on Twitter.

  43. 43

    @J R in WV:
    That is what the paper Cheney wrote back when he worked for the AEI said, yes, while throwing in that the locals would love us and do all this willingly once we demonstrated our strength. No, that was not meant ironically. That’s how neoconservatives think the world works.

  44. 44
    SFAW says:

    @J R in WV:

    Right?

    Almost. You forgot Poland! the flowers the troops would be greeted with.

  45. 45
    jonas says:

    @L85NJGT: Ethanol is a boondoggle, both economically and environmentally (it’s not carbon neutral when used as a fuel additive), and it’s really bad on your engine, so seeing it phased out over the long term may not be a terrible thing. Too bad for the farmers, though — but they voted overwhelmingly for this fossil fuel-humping idiot, as well as the GOP representatives like Grassley who bitch and moan a lot, but are doing absolutely nothing to rein him in.

  46. 46
    SFAW says:

    @lumpkin:

    There is exactly zero reason to believe anything Mulvaney says about anything.

    Oh, right. Next you’ll be trying to tell us that we shouldn’t necessarily believe everything the new King of Israel says.

  47. 47
    SFAW says:

    @StringOnAStick:

    I recall NPR grabbing a sound bite from a guy who voted for Obama because he was unemployed and viciously turning on the POTUS when 1 month after Obama’s inauguration the economy wasn’t fixed because he was still unemployed.

    NPR’s version of a Cletus Safari.

  48. 48
    balconesfault says:

    Trump seems to believe that the major problem isn’t that Russia illegally annexed Crimea … but that Putin “outsmarted” Obama.

  49. 49
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @StringOnAStick:

    I would like to make college free, and MANDATORY.

    Why? There are plenty of people who went to college and were still dumb enough to vote for Trump.

  50. 50
    Citizen Alan says:

    @OzarkHillbilly:

    I want these people to lose everything. I would rather buy every bit of food I eat for the rest of my life from Mexico and Canada than see a penny go to god-damned “salt of the earth” Midwestern farmers who still support Shitgibbon.

  51. 51
    Gravenstone says:

    @Brachiator: Believe Baud is hypothesizing the stated rationale, not the reality. Especially when we all know that any Republicans still in Congress will do everything in their power to obstruct Democrat’s efforts at recovery (cf. 2008-9)

  52. 52
    Brachiator says:

    Examples of farm subsidy welfare fraud:

    Payments are supposed to be capped at $125,000.

    USDA data show the biggest beneficiary has been DeLine Farms Partnership and two similarly named partnerships registered at the same address in Charleston, Missouri, that collected nearly $2.8 million. They’re led by Donald DeLine and his wife, Lisa DeLine.

    Their attorney, Robert Serio, said the partnerships qualified legally and probably could have qualified for more if not for the caps…

    At Peterson Farms in Loretto, Kentucky, eight members of the family partnership collected a total $863,560 for crops grown on over 15,000 acres, including wheat and corn used at the nearby Maker’s Mark bourbon distillery. Co-owner Bernard Peterson said it didn’t make up for all their losses at a time when it was already hard to be profitable.

    Let the good times roll! 

    https://www.cbsnews.com/news/trump-farm-subsidies-farmers-find-ways-to-boost-their-payments/

  53. 53
    Kelly says:

    @SFAW:

    I’m so old, I can remember when some money person — Larry Lessig, maybe? — said Iraq was going to cost more than $300 B, and he got fired because BushCo thought he was making them look bad by “overstating” how much it would cost. Good times, good times.

    It was Lawrence B. Lindsey, Larry Lessig is a law professor

  54. 54
    germy says:

    Mulvaney was known for his support for fiscal conservatism as a congressman. However, as OMB Director, he oversaw an expansion in the deficit. The deficit increases were a result of both spending increases and tax cuts, and were unusually high for a period of economic expansion. In 2019, with regard to its potential mention in an upcoming State of the Union speech, Mulvaney said that “nobody cares” about the deficit. A staunch opponent of the CFPB while in Congress, Mulvaney’s tenure as acting Director of the bureau led to a large reduction of the bureau’s enforcement and regulatory powers.

    wikipedia

  55. 55
    germy says:

    @Brachiator:

    including wheat and corn used at the nearby Maker’s Mark bourbon distillery

    Famers… feeding America!

  56. 56

    @Brachiator: In Brecht’s words:

    Wäre es da
    Nicht doch einfacher, die Regierung
    Löste das Volk auf und
    Wählte ein anderes?

    Or, in English for those whose German is as rusty as mine:

    Would it not be easier
    In that case for the government
    To dissolve the people
    And elect another?

    Brecht was of course being sarcastic, but sometimes I wonder.

    (My actual solution would involve a complete overhaul of the economy, the electoral system, and lastly the structure and even function of government, but I don’t ever expect it to happen, not least because our precious Constitution is a tremendously flawed document.)

  57. 57
    Chyron HR says:

    @OzarkHillbilly:

    “The USDA is part of the deep state! They’re out to get me! As your lord and savior, I command you to tear them from their offices and kill them in My name!”

  58. 58
    germy says:

    More venality:

    In March 2019, Mulvaney said, “every single (health care) plan that this White House has ever put forward since Donald Trump was elected covered pre-existing conditions.” The Associated Press described the claim as “misleading” and PolitiFact rated this assertion “mostly false”, stating that all the health care proposals supported by the White House would have weakened protections for individuals with preexisting conditions, and led to gaps in health insurance coverage and higher premium rates.

    wikipedia

  59. 59
    The Moar You Know says:

    I would like to make college free, and MANDATORY.

    @StringOnAStick: In all seriousness I’d like to see the opposite. MAKE EMPLOYERS STOP USING A COLLEGE DEGREE AS A REQUIREMENT TO OBTAIN WORK. We send far too many people to college and doing so has profound and lifelong adverse effects on their lives. We’d be far better off with two-year trade or skills schools for the vast majority of people who currently are losing income-generating years in college – or being unemployed because for one reason or another they can’t go – and college for the very small number of people who have reason to study a subject in depth that a trade school cannot cover.

    If the concern is that the kids coming out of high schools don’t know anything about math, physics, critical thinking, and literature, make them learn that shit in high school. It’s inexcusable that kids coming out of high school today don’t know much more than kids coming out of elementary school.

  60. 60
    germy says:

    @The Moar You Know: We need smart people in the trades.

    A few weeks ago a plumber was working on our sink. He removed the pipe from under the sink. I watched him turn the water on to test the faucet, and water went down the drain and onto the floor (over his smartphone he had lying under the sink) because he had neglected to re-attach the pipe before his test.

  61. 61
    Brachiator says:

    @(((CassandraLeo))):

    I was listening to a podcast a while back and one of the panelists said that they were an anarchist. I thought, “Hey, I know somebody who has the same beliefs!” Sadly, it’s been a while and I don’t recall which podcast. British politics. Anyway…

    I propose replacing FPTP with approval voting, if anyone asks. It’s simple to explain – each voter votes for as many candidates as they like; the candidate with the most votes still wins – but essentially not prone to the spoiler effect, making third parties no longer the sole province of cranks and ratfuckers.)

    I’m not sure it would make a difference. I don’t think that the two party system is best. I think that a lot of Americans think strong alternative progressive parties might emerge, but I think it probable that you would get a separate Tea Party and other right wing factions.

    Other countries also end up with permanent fringe parties, since there is no incentive for small parties to modify their views to attract more supporters. They know that they always have a chance of gaining seats (in parliamentary systems) and may have outsize power if they are needed to form a coalition.

    In the last San Francisco mayoral election, two candidates tried to game the approval system. The candidates who were two and three in the polls actively tried to get voters to always make one of them their second choice. In this way the hoped to topple the front runner. Almost worked.

    Also, under an approval system, I need a negative vote, a way of saying that one or more candidates would be utterly undesirable. I would not always have lesser candidates who might be acceptable if my first choice did not win.

  62. 62
    jonas says:

    @StringOnAStick:

    I recall NPR grabbing a sound bite from a guy who voted for Obama because he was unemployed and viciously turning on the POTUS when 1 month after Obama’s inauguration the economy wasn’t fixed because he was still unemployed.

    Compare this to all the WWC guys or ranchers the media keep finding on their various Cletus safaris who have been completely screwed over by Trump’s policies, yet vow that they’re “still willing to give the president a chance” to turn things around eventually. I wonder what the difference is this time around?

  63. 63
    germy says:

    @jonas: They’re confident trump’ll keep hurting the right people

  64. 64
    Doug R says:

    @L85NJGT:

    Ill presidente is collapsing the ethanol industry by handing out EPA waivers to small gasoline refineries, because their revenues don’t justify any new investments, like adding biofuels (ethanol) to the blend. He’s also jackhammering food grade ethanol production by screwing hard liquor exports to China.

    So midwest plants are shutting down, corn prices will tank, etc.

    So they stop the trade war with Canada, Canada drops their retaliatory tariffs, and IMMEDIATELY get into a trade war with China.
    What does trump have against Kentucky bourbon?

    2103.10.00 Soya sauce
    2103.20.10 Tomato ketchup and other tomato sauces: Tomato ketchup
    2103.20.90 Tomato ketchup and other tomato sauces: Other
    2103.90.10 Mayonnaise and salad dressing
    2103.90.20 Mixed condiments and mixed seasonings
    2103.90.90 Other sauces
    2104.10.00 Soups and broths and preparations therefor
    2202.10.00 Waters, including mineral waters and aerated waters, containing added sugar or other sweetening matter or flavoured
    2208.30.00 Whiskies

    On May 17, 2019, the United States (U.S.) and Canada announced an agreement to lift U.S. section 232 tariffs on Canadian steel and aluminum, as well as Canada’s retaliatory countermeasures. As announced by the Minister of Finance on May 20, 2019, Canadian countermeasures against imports from the U.S. are no longer in effect. The surtaxes are repealed via the Order Repealing the United States Surtax Order (Steel and Aluminum) (SOR/2019-143) and the Order Repealing the United States Surtax Order (Other Goods) (SOR/2019-144).

    https://www.fin.gc.ca/access/tt-it/cacsap-cmpcaa-1-eng.asp

  65. 65
    Brachiator says:

    @germy:

    PolitiFact rated this assertion “mostly false”, stating that all the health care proposals supported by the White House would have weakened protections for individuals with preexisting conditions, and led to gaps in health insurance coverage and higher premium rates.

    The Democrats need to make this clear every time they talk about health care.

    I remember the GOP lying, ducking and weaving, and hiding and running away from Town Halls to avoid answering questions about health care.

    The GOP has failed miserably in their promises to deliver an alternative to Obamacare. Everything they promise is a sop to the health insurance industry.

  66. 66
    Fair Economist says:

    @jonas:

    Ethanol is a boondoggle, both economically and environmentally (it’s not carbon neutral when used as a fuel additive)

    Ethanol from sugar cane is a pretty good deal ecologically and economically – not ideal but much better than petroleum. Ethanol from corn (as done in the US) is terrible, as you say.

    In Trump’s case, I suspect the driver is not a sudden attack of economic rationality but him acting in the interests of the oil companies, who can see the writing on the wall from electric vehicles, and it doesn’t look pretty for them (great for everybody else though). Ethanol isn’t a major competitor for oil in the US, but when the shift from petroleum kicks in in a few years they will need every scrap to hang on a little longer.

  67. 67
    SFAW says:

    @Kelly:

    It was Lawrence B. Lindsey, Larry Lessig is a law professor

    Thanks for the correction. Lessig didn’t “feel” right, but I was too lazy to look for the right Larry.

  68. 68
    Brachiator says:

    @germy:

    They’re confident trump’ll keep hurting the right people

    But there was a group that recently and bitterly complained that Trump was not ‘hurting the people he was supposed to hurt. ” Ah, here it is, from a NYT story.

    “I voted for him, and he’s the one who’s doing this,” Minton told Mazzei. “I thought he was going to do good things. He’s not hurting the people he needs to be hurting.”

    Trump is scrambling to find goodies he can pass out, and demanding that groups of voters show their loyalty to him. He’s getting desperate. The Democrats need to take advantage of this, without kissing the ass of Deplorables the way that Biden is doing.

  69. 69

    @Brachiator: Basically, not voting for a candidate in an approval voting system is a disapproval vote. There actually is an alternate proposal, a variant of approval voting, sometimes known as 3-2-1 voting. I don’t have time to go through all the specifics before leaving for work, but the link I provided should give you the basics. To some extent, 3-2-1 voting is a variant of approval voting where you can vote -1, 0, or +1 for each candidate, but it’s more complicated than that on the counting side (it’s fairly simple to explain to voters what they have to do though). IIRC 3-2-1 is likelier (though not guaranteed) to elect a Condorcet winner than most of the other single-winner methods, but I don’t remember all the specifics.

    The way the arithmetic behind approval voting shakes out, though, means that if you’re not voting for a candidate, then you’re voting against that candidate, by virtue of your votes for one or more of that candidate’s opponents (unless you just leave your ballot blank, I guess). Essentially, think of approval voting as a way of giving each candidate a pass/fail grade. The candidate with the most pass grades wins the election; if you’re not giving a pass grade to a candidate, then they will fall behind when your ballot is tallied, because you’ve given pass grades to one or more of their opponents. Essentially, no one can get elected if a plurality of voters don’t want them to be.

    I also don’t have time to go in depth into the issues with two-party systems right now but the tl;dr of it is that being able to include the centre in a coalition government makes it less likely that the fringe nut jobs will have a stranglehold over our politics. Right now Republicans get primaried all the time for not being far-right enough, and people who will never vote for a Democrat just vote for the far-right whack jobs because they think we’re soc¡alists. (no idea if FYWP is going to moderate that and not about to chance it.) As a result, the tilt of Congress is much further to the right than it might be if there were a centre-right party. The far-right whack jobs would still exist, but people would have a less extreme alternative, which would probably get rid of at least 25% of the Tea Party nutters still in Congress, if not more. Furthermore, there’s a possibility that a government might get formed from centre-right, centrist, and centre-left parties, which would reduce the extremity of the swing from far-right to what qualifies as left in this country. Right now those are basically your only two options, so you’ve got an on/off switch that essentially switches position every four to eight years, which resulted in Clinton being followed by W. followed by Obama followed by … this catastrofuck. (granted Dump and W., the first time, weren’t even elected because the FUCKING ELECTORAL COLLEGE and on that cheery note I’m off to work)

    (note that I also wanted to reply to more of your post but it’ll have to wait ’til later… but at a glance it sounds like SF’s voting is ranked choice or something along those lines rather than approval. Similar systems, not identical though. Approval is binary, 1 or 0, where, as stated, 0 basically counts as a vote against due to the way the math works out)

    Ceterum censeo factionem Republicanam esse delendam.

  70. 70
    germy says:

    @Brachiator:

    But there was a group that recently and bitterly complained that Trump was not ‘hurting the people he was supposed to hurt. ” Ah, here it is, from a NYT story.

    But wasn’t that quote from before he started really hurting the right people? If the NYT went back and found that same woman, she might give trump her yelp review “I’d give four stars. Would definitely vote for him again.”

  71. 71
    sdhays says:

    @Keith P.: What pisses me off is that the whole thing is even treated as an actual offer or even idea. Just to recap:
    * We found out that Dump was obsessing over buying Greenland because his staffers were “bewildered” and tripping over themselves to figure out how to even respond to his stupid, random obsession. This was the low-quality hires equivalent of a cry for help.
    * Then conservative media tried to invent a reason for Dump having this stupid obsession, because Dump can’t be losing whatever little mind he ever had.
    * Then the mainstream media discussed it seriously as if it was even an actual proposal rather than some random thing Dump was mumbling about while sitting on the crapper.
    * By this time, Denmark was forced by all of this media chatter to this report of the Cosplay President’s madness in the most polite way possible to say “that’s a stupid idea and you’re a stupid person for suggesting it”.
    * And then President Pathetic had his widdle feefees hurt so bad by Denmark’s “harsh” rejection of the proposal that he never even made, he canceled his trip. Or he was terrified that his reception was going to be obviously colder than his predecessor’s. I’m not sure which reflects better on him.

    To this day, the Dump Administration has not articulated why Dump was obsessing over “buying” Greenland. We only have speculation and some “serious” analysis by people who’s job it is to look for things to talk about. People are talking about Dump trying to buy Greenland, and as stupid as that is, it’s still giving him and his shitty administration too credit.

  72. 72
    germy says:

    @sdhays: I saw this comment on LGM:

    sigaba • an hour ago

    Monday: It didn’t happen, lying press anonymous sources!

    Tuesday: It was just a joke, he’s very funny. Prime Minister of Denmark can’t take a joke.

    Wednesday: Your overreaction is the real story, lib derangement! If you people are ever in power again it will be terrifying, look at how you hate America.

    Thursday: He sometimes is clumsy but the underlying point is a good one, Greenland has rare earth minerals that we can mine once climate change gets rid of the glaciers (We’re at Wednesday on Global Warming)

    Friday: It’s good that he said it, at least someone’s Doing Something about Greenland. Anyway you libs hate Russia so you should be for it, you’re so disloyal.

    Saturday: Death to Denmark

  73. 73
    Uncle jeffy says:

    @Keith P.: Tax cuts for the rich, of course (hat tip to Gary Trudeau)

  74. 74
    germy says:

    More venality:

    Fox News said Thursday that Sarah Sanders has been hired to provide political commentary and analysis across all its properties, including Fox News Channel, Fox Business Network and the radio and podcast division.

  75. 75
    Belafon says:

    @Baud: Or Republicans regain control because Democrats are too bold, making too many changes too fast.

    If you follow the Democrats on Twitter, you know that many of them want Medicare for All, a Green New Deal, free college, and many other goodies. From following Twitter, you might get the impression that Democrats represent a spectrum from liberal to very liberal. Only, it ain’t so.

    A new CNN/SSRS poll shows that 43% of Democrats consider themselves moderates and 11% consider themselves conservatives. According to our staff mathematicians, that’s a majority. Who knew? Although Joe Biden’s continued lead in the primaries might provide a hint.

    Now back to Twitter. Only 22% of Americans are on Twitter at all. Also, 80% of the Twitter content is created by 10% of its users. In case you don’t have a calculator handy, this means that 2% of Americans (and an unknown number of Russians) create 80% of the content on Twitter. So Twitter is not representative of anything other than the 2% of the population that spends its whole day tweeting. Yet the media act like if something is trending on Twitter, then the whole country is talking about it and it is important. Nope and nope again.

    https://www.electoral-vote.com/evp2019/Pres/Maps/Aug22.html#item-4

    Do not underestimate the ability of the American people to be scared of change.

  76. 76
    sdhays says:

    @germy: I expect that from them. It’s how the mainstream media has conflated this into being an actual proposal that pisses me off. I mean, f*ck. The initial report was basically that he was wandering the halls of the White House asking people he bumped into what it would take to buy Greenland. Why is THAT not the story?

    Oh, right. It’s not “news” because “everyone already knows” that the POtuS is almost completely out of marbles.

  77. 77
    waratah says:

    @The Moar You Know: you need to look at Beto’s plan. He has plans for tech and trade schools. They made fun of his trip before he announced but one of the things he did was stop at a school in New Mexico that was training workers to work on the the tall windmills. He knows workers like this will be needed in his climate plan.

  78. 78
    germy says:

    Republican lawmakers say they're hopeful Trump will pivot to deficit reduction in a second term. @ESCochrane https://t.co/6bn2eDPJTI pic.twitter.com/xUaPvUmlxI— Jim Tankersley (@jimtankersley) August 21, 2019

    The best way for Democrats to safely cut SS and Medicare is to have Trump do it. This is their last chance. https://t.co/wVogLd3RbR— Susan of Texas (@SusanofTexas) August 22, 2019

  79. 79
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @(((CassandraLeo))): People can’t figure out how to vote on FPTP ballots. Do you really think that they are going to try to master something that apparently takes 10 paragraphs to describe (I am assuming that you were about halfway through when you had to go to work)?

  80. 80
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @Belafon: I also suspect that a lot of the people who self identify as “liberal” aren’t really all that liberal in policy preference terms. E.g., the Whole Foods/NPR/“totebagger” set.

  81. 81
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    Donald’s recession is going to make the “Great recession” look like a walk on the beach. He’s busy tanking the global economy with his abject stupidity.

  82. 82
    Kay says:

    It’s sad but true – this is the only thing they won’t be able to lie about. I noticed it with Bush. They stuck with him through illegal and unprovoked invasions, billions and billions in borrowed warmongering money, US casualties, etc. His (rural) support here didn’t drop until the economy edged down and gas prices went up. Bush, however, unlike Trump, had personal qualities he could rely on to get him thru initially. His supporters really loved him- they believed he was a “good man”- family man, ostensibly religious, etc.

    Trump doesn’t have that. He’s an absolutely horrible human being with no redeeming personal qualities of any kind. You kind of “bank” that sort of thing. If people like you they won’t turn on you so fast. Trump has gone in the opposite direction- he’s much more of an asshole now that we know him better. Petty, mean-spirited, talks too fucking much, lies all the time. He’s got nothing to fall back on.

  83. 83
    Fair Economist says:

    @Belafon: cites

    A new CNN/SSRS poll shows that 43% of Democrats consider themselves moderates and 11% consider themselves conservatives. According to our staff mathematicians, that’s a majority. Who knew? Although Joe Biden’s continued lead in the primaries might provide a hint

    Keep in mind that American support economic proposal *far* to the left of their supposed liberal/conservative status because of perpetual media demonization of “liberals”. For example, even “conservatives” frequently say they would prefer Scandinavian-level income inequality to what we have now. For other issues like climate change and women’s right to choose the tilt to the left is less, but still positive.

    The ideal candidate electorally would market themselves as a centrist and support Warren’s policies.

  84. 84
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: Prezactly. It’s too damn complicated.

  85. 85
    Aleta says:

    There’s money to be made during a recession if you have enough money.

  86. 86
    rikyrah says:

    @germy:

    The best way for Democrats to safely cut SS and Medicare is to have Trump do it. This is their last chance. https://t.co/wVogLd3RbR— Susan of Texas (@SusanofTexas) August 22, 2019

    Get the ENTIRE PHUCK OUTTA HERE.

  87. 87
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Villago Delenda Est: Our side also has difficulties showing up to vote. Some of that is because a good number of our people are struggling to get through the day while working multiple jobs or shuttling the kids to soccer practice, piano lessons etc., and all sorts of other things. Our goal should always be to make voting easier. Anything else suppresses votes.

  88. 88
    zhena gogolia says:

    Time to patronize Dick’s Sporting Goods:

    Kyle Griffin

    Verified account

    @kylegriffin1
    2h2 hours ago
    More
    Dick’s Sporting Goods reports strong earnings amid the company’s experiment in reducing gun sales.

  89. 89
    Mike in NC says:

    @germy: Oh well, it appears that she wasn’t going to get a shot on “Dancing with the Stars” like Spicer and one of Palin’s brats.

  90. 90
    artem1s says:

    @The Moar You Know:

    make them learn that shit in high school.

    It’s not the book learning that they get from college, that is useful….it’s being exposed to a variety of people who didn’t grow up with the exact world view. It was the concept that education should only be used for job training that ruined High Schools and Universities. Sometimes it’s a good thing that you expect to spend your entire life educating and re-educating yourself. The problem is the idiots who think that there should be no need to ever learn anything new once you are over the age of 18.

  91. 91
    catclub says:

    @StringOnAStick:

    My friend the independent annuity sales person is so busy there’s barely enough hours in the day. Mostly investors who are close to retirement of there already, realizing they don’t have enough years left to dig out of an ugly stock market again.

    ouch. if you are behind in savings, buying an annuity locks in mediocrity at best. Never any catching up.

    2008 wasn’t long ago and people remember.

    The wrong lessons. This reminds me of the lessons learned in Germany
    from the 1923 hyperinflation and the experiment with nazism in 1933. What they learned: Inflation is bad in all situations. What they didn’t learn: never give the nazis a chance, even if the unemployment rate is 47%.

  92. 92

    @Omnes Omnibus: No, that’s precisely why I favour approval voting over 3-2-1 voting, even if the latter generates more desirable results. I believe Brachiator had approval voting mixed up with something along the lines of ranked choice voting, which is a more complicated implementation of the same concept, and perhaps counterintuitively, easier to “game”. Approval voting itself is incredibly simple, but if people have it confused with other voting types, it can be challenging to clear up the differences.

    Approval voting can be summed up in a single sentence: Each voter votes for as many or as few candidates as they wish to vote for, and the candidate who receives the most votes is declared the victor. So the only actual change from the current system is that the voter gets to choose as many candidates as desired, rather than being restricted to a single choice. There are a lot of game theory and resulting implications of this change that I could go into, but not on a phone. The most important is that Duverger’s Law (two-party system due to spoiler effect) stops applying.

    3-2-1 voting can actually be explained fairly simply, too, BTW, but I quite doubt it’s simple enough for Americans. It might be acceptable for Europeans who are already used to complicated voting systems, but I suspect many of our voters will take a while just to get used to approval voting.

    Anyway, that wasn’t all of it; there was definitely something I’d have liked to say about Brachiator’s first paragraph, maybe relating to the podcast or British politics, but it’s slipped my mind now. (For the record, I slept quite poorly last night.)

    (On a break; will reply – from phone – when I can, which will be sporadic.)

    Ceterum censeo factionem Republicanam esse delendam.

  93. 93
    catclub says:

    @Aleta:

    There’s money to be made during a recession if you have enough money.

    Inflation favors people who have debts that become less onerous with inflation.
    Deflation favors people who have those same loans as assets.

  94. 94
    J R in WV says:

    @germy:

    Well done, over at LGM, by sigaba… thanks for sharing over here.

  95. 95
    catclub says:

    @Villago Delenda Est:

    Donald’s recession is going to make the “Great recession” look like a walk on the beach. He’s busy tanking the global economy with his abject stupidity.

    I disagree. you cannot have a huge fall if you have not blown a huge bubble. And the world economy now is not in that huge bubble.

    The (worldwide) housing bubble of 2005-2007 and all the debts piled on top of it, have not been re-created — yet, and as long as there is no huge debt pile, the recession will not be too bad. Yes I know about company bonds being lower and lower quality, but that pile is still not as big as the debt pile from the housing bubble.

  96. 96
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @(((CassandraLeo))): Sorry. I’m not buying it. It would complicate the voting process. As I said before, our goal should be to make it easier to vote. I’ll also save you some typing in the future; I understand how both of the systems you described work and that they should bring about a result that is closer to the actual wishes of the electorate.

  97. 97

    @Omnes Omnibus: I don’t see how “pick as many candidates as you like in each race” is any harder to understand than “pick one candidate in each race”. I would actually contend quite the reverse. Ballots get spoiled in FPTP when voters select two or more candidates. This problem is literally impossible in approval voting. A voting system that results in fewer spoiled ballots seems like an easier voting system to me. If you like a candidate, fill in the bubble next to their name; if you don’t, leave it blank. I don’t see how that’s more complicated than “if you marked more than one box in a given race, your vote won’t be counted, and you’ll have to send away for another if you’re voting by mail… and then navigate a mess of paperwork to cancel your spoiled ballot and blah, blah, blah.”

    There will still be spoiled ballots in approval voting, of course, but only if voters mark boxes they didn’t mean to mark. If they misunderstand the instructions, the worst that happens is likely to be that they treat it like a FPTP race, but their vote still counts. In FPTP, if they don’t understand and/or fail to observe the “one candidate per race” rule, some or all of their ballot gets thrown out.

    Approval voting is not complicated. To be fair, the party system that crops up as a result will be more complicated. I don’t see this as a downside. It is in fact the whole point of this exercise. Most issues have more than two sides, and it would be nice to see more representation for currently excluded viewpoints in our political system. I contend that nuking FPTP is one way to make this occur.

    Ceterum censeo factionem Republicanam esse delendam.

  98. 98
    Zinsky says:

    Elizabeth Warren is going to be our next president. Who she picks as VP may be critical in re-establishing the Democratic Party as the majority party in Congress for decades to come. Julian Castro fits that role, IMHO.

  99. 99
    Brachiator says:

    @artem1s:

    make them learn that shit in high school.

    It’s not the book learning that they get from college, that is useful….it’s being exposed to a variety of people who didn’t grow up with the exact world view.

    The idea of college as an expensive (or government subsidized) social club seems very self-indulgent. I agree that this is a happy side benefit of the college experience for a lot of people, but there are probably cheaper ways of achieving this.

  100. 100
    Citizen Alan says:

    @Kay:

    I have theorized that the real reason for Dubya’s sudden and significant drop in GOP support was that he couldn’t thread the needle on immigration. The GOP at that time was a marriage of convenience between the xenophobic bigots and the low-wage corporate slave drivers. Where immigration was concerned, the two camps had mutually exclusive policy goals. Dubya had to pick one and being a corporate greedhead himself, he went with the slave drivers, at which point the bigots turned on him.

  101. 101
    TenguPhule says:

    @catclub:

    And the world economy now is not in that huge bubble.

    Three words.

    Credit Default Swaps.

  102. 102
    catclub says:

    @Citizen Alan: ummm, that combined with the clusterfuck of Iraq, combined with the clusterfuck of katrina response, combined with losing a majority in both houses in 2006, and having no more elections to run in. Combined with the economy in 2008.

    I think they said the reason GOP voters abandoned the party in 2006 was none of those, but perceived corruption. Republicans can stand a lot.

  103. 103
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Brachiator: It really depends on whether one sees college/university as a set of courses leading to certain credentials that will help one to get a job and/or to get access to the next set of courses or if it is a broader set of experiences that includes those courses.

    I think it should be the broader set of experiences. I understand that this is beyond the means of many students, but I think that they are shortchanged by this. We were able to provide this to college students in the past as well as providing vocational training for those who choose that route. There is no reason other than the country’s collective decision that taxes are an unnecessary evil holding us back from doing this (and a hell of a lot of other things.

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