The Importance of Things Not Easily Measured

Posted by Christine & John on December 12, 2017 at 8:26 PM

Our schools don't teach us about some of the most important government actions, ones that built the foundations of our prosperity. The reason is that most important trend are slow growing, their results evident only with the passages of time, sometimes generations. They also are cooperative enterprises. The very best that any individual can hope to achieve is to be necessary but not sufficient. Politicians have a lot of trouble taking credit for these things and historians have trouble fitting narratives to them. These are not stories without heroes, but rather that there are too many heroes to count, each playing a role, often unaware of the role they are playing. How do you explain it a few words, in one lecture?

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​Normalizing the Flood of Corruption & Abuse

Posted by Keeley on December 11, 2017 at 11:19 PM

This is getting to the point where Old Testament language seems the only way to describe the flood of controversial news sweeping over America these last few weeks. Consider these items:

The wave of abuse scandals is keeping what normally would be headline news off the front page, to use an outdated simile. Senator Graham has warned the spouses and children of U.S. personnel in South Korea that they should think about heading home. What he means is war with North Korea is now a very real possibility.

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​Mike Flynn's Flip - Mueller is Running an Obstruction of Justice Investigation

Posted by Keeley on December 5, 2017 at 9:02 PM

What does Mike Flynn's plea bargain mean? That seems to depend on what side of the aisle, or what side of the #NeverTrump versus #GoTrump intraparty divide, you're from.

For Democrats and Trump opponents in general, we're one step from uncovering secret recordings or other evidence of Putin and Trump literally planning the 2016 elections strategy together. If you tend to be a Trump supporter - or at least neutral in the tribal Trump war - then Flynn has been charged with a process crime: lying to the FBI over whether he had any conversations/contacts with the Russian ambassador.

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​Corker's No On Tax Reform & Madison's Defense Of the Senate

Posted by Keeley on December 4, 2017 at 8:30 PM

Senators have a lot of power, especially in a fairly evenly divided Senate, don't they? And it is hard to know how much their decisions to vote up or down any given bill are based on the policy implications, and how much they may be based on personal interest or personal vendettas.

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​Section 702 - A Crude But Necessary Balancing Act

Posted by Keeley on November 29, 2017 at 6:10 PM

Section 702 will almost certainly continue life unaltered in any meaningful way by any amendments. That's the emerging consensus on Capitol Hill apparently.

What the heck is Section 702 you ask?

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Cut the sinners a little slack

Posted by Christine & John on November 24, 2017 at 11:18 AM

I have long said that we should draw bright lines between public and private lives and I would also generally advocate compartmentalizing. Most of the time we do not need - and do not have the capacity - to judge the whole person.

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As Scandal After Scandal Breaks Out - Remember de Tocqueville

Posted by Keeley on November 21, 2017 at 6:25 PM

This is truly just starting. The analysis will also come and some of it will of course be of the radical, burn-down-maledom sort where if you harbor doubts about a 15-year old transgender boy showering with your 13-year old daughter then you might as well have been cruising the malls back when, looking for underage girls.

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​Why AG Sessions Pushed Back Against His Own Party

Posted by Keeley on November 16, 2017 at 6:43 PM

Where to start?

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is implying he'd like Attorney General Jeff Sessions to retake his senate seat in what one presumes would be through a write-in vote that would do several things:

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​What the Hell Does the GOP do With Roy Moore?

Posted by Keeley on November 13, 2017 at 6:38 PM

December 12 is just under a month away. And a month is a long time in politics, especially in politics under the Trump administration. The twelfth of December is of course the special election to decide who will replace Jeff Sessions as Alabama senator and, along with senior senator Richard Shelby; represent the state in the U.S. Senate. Roy Moore, embattled and attacked by both sides of the aisle, is now slipping a little in the pools. How much he's slipping depends on which poll, however, and an Emerson College survey taken after the Washington Post published a story on his possible harassment and perhaps even abuse of teenage girls, shows Moore leading in Alabama by 10 percentage points over his Democrat opponent Doug Jones.

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​The Senate Drags the House Tax Plan Back into The Swamp

Posted by Keeley on November 10, 2017 at 2:39 PM

The Senate should be called the House of Lords. In their isolated, bubble-like wisdom, GOP senators have rolled back most of the best ideas in the House's tax reform bill. Think of some of the items they hauled back into the greedy confines of privileged exemptions:

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Another racist hoax

Posted by Christine & John on November 8, 2017 at 6:22 PM

Remember the outrages about racist slurs at the Air Force Academy? Turns out the black cadet did it to himself. How about that black church that burned down, with Trump written on the wall? That got national attention as a hate crime. Turns out that a black parishioner did it. Bomb threats against Jews? This is the guy. Or the hate crime that turned out to be a blind girl taking care of her dog. Or the guy who wrote the n-word on his own car. People do this because they can so easily create hysteria over nothing important.

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​Defining Evil on Halloween in NYC

Posted by Keeley on November 2, 2017 at 6:36 PM

I can hear the sounds of Halloween from next door as I write this. No, not the sounds of kids trick or treating, but rather the unmistakable music and dialogue from John Carpenter's original, 1978 classic terror film. My wife is watching it on TV in the bedroom. And here comes that haunting piano riff that provides a musical motif throughout the film. Yes, I'm old enough that I was of legal drinking age when I saw it the first time in it's opening run in movie theatres, so I was then able to head quickly to a local watering hole to calm my nerves with a few cheap beers.

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​CEOs Who You Gonna Call? Axios!

Posted by Keeley on October 26, 2017 at 9:40 PM

Mike Allen - one of the beltway's most influential journalists according to beltway journalists - seems to be a little envious of Glenn Simpson and his operation over at Fusion GPS. Aside from trying to get various secretaries in Trump's cabinet to quit their jobs based on his emails and columns, he now wants to expand his horizons. Here's what Allen had to say in his daily email yesterday:

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​How Can Anything Get Passed in the Senate Nowadays?

Posted by Keeley on October 25, 2017 at 4:03 PM

When you have Ezra Klein at Vox claiming you should run for re-election and that it was wrong for you to drop out, maybe it is time to retire. But surely Senator Flake will not go gently into that good (or not so) political night. We now have the prospect of at least three GOP senators berating the president as a threat to America's democracy and doing it from the Senate floor for at least another year. Or more accurately, doing it even more ferociously than before. That would be up to and including next year's mid-terms. In case you're counting.

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Nothing is Sacred in The Culture Wars

Posted by Keeley on October 20, 2017 at 6:28 PM

Nothing is off bounds in the culture wars, especially as they apply to this administration and its relationship with the media and with the opposition. And that includes those in uniform killed in combat.

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