Thursday Morning Open Thread: If We Can Keep It…

(Mike Luckovich via GoComics.com)
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Apart from staying alert for the next assault, what’s on the agenda for the day?

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No sooner than time, the Media Village Idiots’ Conventional Wisdom may be shifting, which is in our favor. Jonathan Lemire, at AP, “Analysis: Trump unlikely to avoid blame for health care loss”:

Trump took office armed with Republican control of both houses of Congress and an ambitious agenda that would begin with the repeal and replacement of Obamacare. Six months later, the collapse of the GOP plan was a sharp rebuke for the president, who was unable to cajole or threaten Republicans to stay in line and who exerted little of his diminished political capital to see through a promise that had been at the core of his party since Obamacare became law seven years ago.

The president’s disjointed support for the health care plan did little to persuade Republicans to support it, and the fact that his approval ratings had dropped below 40 percent didn’t help either.

Trump never held a news conference or delivered a major speech to sell the bill to the public. He never leveraged his popularity among rank-and-file Republican voters by barnstorming the districts of wavering GOP senators. And he never spearheaded a coherent communications strategy — beyond random tweets — to push for the plan…

Sounding almost like a bystander during his brief Oval Office remarks Tuesday, Trump six times expressed “disappointment” that the Republican effort had failed. And he insisted the fault rested with Democrats and suggested Obamacare should be left to fail on its own.

I’m not going to own it,” Trump insisted. “I can tell you that Republicans are not going to own it.”

Democrats blasted Trump’s blame game, with Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer saying his refusal to accept responsibility demonstrated “such a lack of leadership.”

“That is such a small and petty response,” Schumer said. “Because the president, he’s in charge. And to hurt millions of people because he’s angry he didn’t get his way is not being a leader.”

The conservative House Freedom Caucus defied him and ignored his Twitter threats. The two senators who withdrew their support Monday night, effectively killing the bill, didn’t even give the White House a heads-up before announcing their decisions. And even though Trump allies have threatened to aid primary challengers to a pair of on-the-fence senators — Jeff Flake of Arizona and Dean Heller of Nevada — the Republicans did not cave, potentially setting a worrisome precedent for the White House as it tries to move ahead with the rest of its stalled agenda…



Tuesday Morning Open Thread: A Win, If We Can Keep It!

(Jeff Danziger’s website)
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Read Dave’s latest post, if you haven’t already.

The Washington Post has some more detail on McConnell’s latest dodge.

One can never underestimate the steely resolve of a gang of GOPers intent on making other people suffer, even if it requires shooting themselves in a sensitive area. But then again, Mitch McConnell is perceived as being responsible for this latest Repub fustercluck — and neither he nor the guy squatting in the Oval Office seem to have a vast stock of either good will or fear built up to bring the defectors back.
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Apart from a huge sigh of relief (and a strengthened resolve not to take your eyes off these bastids), what’s on the agenda for the day?


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Fox News reporter speaks up, in case you’re wondering:



Exclusive Video: Obamacare Repeal

Balloon Juice has obtained exclusive, behind-the-scenes video depicting Obamacare repeal attempts by Donald J. Trump and the Republicans in Congress:

New Repeal-O-Meter should arrive from ACME Corporation later this week. Hope the results are consistent with prior attempts.

Open thread!



Saturday Morning Open Thread, No Politics (Except by Implication) Edition

Blair Braverman is a dogsled racer; that peculiar vehicle in the background is how you transport a whole team of extremely hyper, very fit dogs to Their Happiest Place on Earth (and believe me I’ve known flyball competitors and even some AKC conformation handlers who’d at least consider using a similar trailer).

I could do seventeen Trump-Crime-Family posts every day, except (a) I have a life, believe it or not; and (b) I do not wish to be responsible for any readers throwing themselves or even their devices out the nearest window.

Political or not, what’s on the agenda for the day?
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Especially for beloved commentor SiubhanDuinne…



Wednesday Evening Open Thread: Tick… Tick… Tick…

While the Repubs are busy with ‘a little light treason,’ what’s on the agenda for the evening?



Open Thread: Apparently April Fools’ Day Has Been Rescheduled

… To July 3rd. Does an ambitious couple of kingmakers brand themselves the ‘WTF Party’ in all seriousness? Well, they’re venture capitalists quoting gamer lingo, so…

Mark Pincus and Reid Hoffman want to hack the Democratic Party.

Not literally. Not the likes of what befell the team behind Hillary Clinton’s 2016 campaign, resulting in scores of private emails being published online — and countless news stories that helped seal her defeat. No, Pincus, the co-founder of Zynga, and Hoffman, the brains behind LinkedIn, want to force Democrats to rewire their philosophical core, from their agenda to the way they choose candidates in elections — the stuff of politics, they said, that had been out of reach for most voters long before Donald Trump became president.

That’s the guiding principle behind Win the Future, a new project by the tech duo that’s launching in time for July 4. The effort — called, yes, WTF for short — aims to be “a new movement and force within the Democratic Party, which can act like its own virtual party,” said Pincus, its lead architect, during an interview.

Think of WTF as equal parts platform and movement. Its new website will put political topics up for a vote — and the most resonant ideas will form the basis of the organization’s orthodoxy. To start, the group will query supporters on two campaigns: Whether or not they believe engineering degrees should be free to all Americans, and if they oppose lawmakers who don’t call for Trump’s immediate impeachment.

Participants can submit their own proposals for platform planks — and if they win enough support, primarily through likes and retweets on Twitter, they’ll become part of WTF’s political DNA, too. Meanwhile, WTF plans to raise money in a bid to turn its most popular policy positions into billboard ads that will appear near airports serving Washington, D.C., ensuring that “members of Congress see it,” Pincus said…

Hard to top LGM‘s post: Gentlemen, Start Your Wanking!

Pincus, who has spent millions backing Democratic campaigns and organizations up and down the ticket for over a decade, said a major part of WTF came from his dissatisfaction with the way the Democratic Party was spending its energy and his money…

“I just don’t feel respected in the political process as a large donor or as a citizen voter,” Pincus said. “I just feel patronized. Everything I get is like, ‘Hey, you couldn’t possibly — it’s too complex and sophisticated what really goes on,’ and, ‘Hey, leave it to us, and we will go and represent you and fight the good fight, and just give us money.'” …

I lucked into a huge pile of money by latching on to an addictive fad that other people did all the work to implement. Why can’t I get some RESPECT from you professionals?



Auschwitz: The GOP Does Not Understand This “Shame” of Which We Speak

No matter how low you’ve seen them go, the Repubs can always find new depths!

I’m not embedding the video, but you can see it at Esquire, if you must. Their rebuttal:

The horrors at Auschwitz were perpetrated by a government, not a terrorist organization. It was not some outside force acting on Germany: Adolf Hitler rose to power with the assent of the German people, and his crimes were possible—and, technically, legal—because he generally enjoyed the consent of a large segment of the population. The problem with Nazi Germany was not military weakness. It was the ideological depravity of a government run on a toxic brand of right-wing nationalism that demonized foreigners and multiple subgroups within German society—but most prominently, and terribly, Jewish people.

The last time Higgins made national headlines, it was when, in a Facebook post addressed to “all of Christendom” after a terror attack in London, he had a suggestion for how to treat every “radicalized Islamic suspect.”

“For the sake of all that is good and righteous,” he wrote, “kill them all.”…


Read more