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Monday, April 23, 2018

OTP 2018 Apr 23: The Dominant-Sport Theory of American Politics

All true, and I have joined in the tut-tutting. Yet I can’t help noticing that the people making these criticisms are mostly a bunch of white guys born in the 1960s. I came along near the start of that decade, so I’ve seen a few cultural shifts in my day, and the first one came via early-1970s headlines proclaiming “Baseball No Longer the National Pastime,” after polls showed that football had become America’s most popular sport. Pundits lamented football’s rise (“violence punctuated by committee meetings,” in George Will’s memorable phrase, though he was certainly no stranger to the press box at Redskins games), and indeed, the change coincided with a trend toward greater complication, bureaucratization, and crudity in American life. After brushing off the 1980s soccer scare, football remained unchallenged for decades.

 

(As always, views expressed in the article lede and comments are the views of the individual commenters and the submitter of the article and do not represent the views of Baseball Think Factory or its owner.)

Mellow Mouse, Benevolent Space Tyrant Posted: April 23, 2018 at 08:10 AM | 1350 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: nba, nfl, off-topic, politics, soccer

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   501. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: April 24, 2018 at 09:05 PM (#5659541)
Got a DNC survey request in the mail today which of course also asked me for a donation as well.
Uh, you kind of have that backwards. It's a donation request thinly disguised as a survey, because someone figured out that people are more likely to give money if they think the organization asking for it cares about their views. The surveys aren't scientific and so nobody looks at them. (Nothing special about the DNC; everyone does it, from the DNC and RNC to the NRA and Sierra Club.)
   502. McCoy Posted: April 24, 2018 at 09:13 PM (#5659546)
They think or they're trying to find out?

If it were me, sitting here in April, I'd be testing messages and issues, then mapping them to contributions received based on the results, and then using that data to determine which issues - and then framing of those issues - most resonant with enthusiastic supporters.

Polls are polls, but you start matching up results to contributions - you find out which items (and messages around those items) will both net you more money this summer and early fall and likewise find out which issues keep your enthusiastic supporters most engaged.


I was thinking more along the lines of David. The survey was an excuse to ask for money. But unlike David I viewed the questions and the answer boxes to be an ad for the DNC. These are all of the things we're hard at work on and the GOP and Trump are big meanies.
   503. perros Posted: April 24, 2018 at 09:17 PM (#5659553)

https://mindfulresistance.net/

humankind’s biggest problem is the psychology of tribalism—a set of cognitive biases that convince us that our group is right and good and its opponents are wrong and bad. I’d say this problem is a big part not only of political polarization in the US but of sectarian conflict abroad and national conflict in general. So thinking about the psychology of political polarization in the US could pay dividends beyond its borders. As could exploring this psychology introspectively, through mindfulness meditation—although, again, meditating isn’t some kind of pre-requisite for joining this cause, and there are ways to improve self-understanding and self-mastery without meditating.

The Mindful Resistance Project is an ongoing exploration, an attempt to shed light on the many difficult questions raised by the war on Trumpism. It’s an attempt, you might say, to make the war truly global, in the sense of trying to take account of all relevant factors, wherever they may be.


Global war paying dividends beyond US borders doesn't seem a particularly mindful metaphor, Robert.
   504. The Yankee Clapper Posted: April 24, 2018 at 09:22 PM (#5659557)
#274:
Clapper seems way too eager here about a poll of 411 respondents that features a runaway 39% win for "undecided." Usually Clapper's so quick with the lectures about getting too far out ahead of the available information, and the risk of jumping to conclusions.
. . .
It seems particularly risky to derive too much relief from a first-time poll from GOPAC, a 527 group whose stated purpose is "Educating And Electing A New Generation Of Republican Leaders" and whose 2018 goal is "working daily to hold our #Republican majorities and flip Democrat seats in state legislatures #acrossthecountry." Also, it'd be hard for any candidate in the West Virginia Republican primary to "fade" from no previous GOPAC poll. Perhaps that's why GOPAC itself didn't make that claim.

To clarify, if needed, the characterization of Blankenship as "fading" was not by the pollster, but it was Politico's headline, which seems accurate, despite efforts by that Democratic Super PAC to pump up Blankenship, since another poll today shows a similar result, with Blankenship behind by a significant margin:
25 percent of likely GOP primary voters prefer Jenkins, compared to 21 percent that back Morrisey. Sixteen percent are supporting Blankenship, while 15 percent back other candidates and 24 voter remain undecided.

Senator Manchin might need a strategy that doesn't count on his ability to pick his opponent.
   505. The Interdimensional Council of Rickey!'s Posted: April 24, 2018 at 09:24 PM (#5659560)
humankind’s biggest problem is the psychology of tribalism


You should hug it out with them, buddy.
   506. Zonk was SHOCKED by #6! Posted: April 24, 2018 at 09:25 PM (#5659561)
Senator Manchin might need a strategy that doesn't count on his ability to pick his opponent.


If I were the GOP, I think I'd insist that my own party's primary voters decide on the nominee rather than the Democratic opponent.

Closed primary and all, seems like this should be easier to accomplish than Clapper implies... but what do I know, I continually find myself in the dark about Democratic Deep State abilities to do all sorts of nefarious stuff EXCEPT win Presidential elections.
   507. BrianBrianson Posted: April 24, 2018 at 09:31 PM (#5659566)
We'll be glad for our innate tribalism if the aliens arrive tomorrow and they're like the aliens from alien(s). #JUSTSAYIN
   508. perros Posted: April 24, 2018 at 09:36 PM (#5659571)
Wright vs. Pinker

But Pinker’s treatment of the psychology of tribalism falls short, and it does so in a surprising way. He pays almost no attention to one of the first things that springs to mind when you hear the word “tribalism.” Namely: People in opposing tribes don’t like each other. More than Pinker seems to realize, the fact of tribal antagonism challenges his sunny view of the future and calls into question his prescriptions for dispelling some of the clouds he does see on the horizon....

Consider, again, climate change. Pinker is not under the illusion that many members of his (and my) climate-change tribe are under: that people in our tribe have objectively assessed the evidence, whereas climate change skeptics have for some reason failed to do that. As with most issues, few people in either tribe have looked closely at the actual evidence. On both sides, most people are just trusting their tribe’s designated experts.

And what energizes this trust? Often, I think, the answer is antagonism. The more you dislike the other tribe, the more uncritically you trust your experts and the more suspiciously you view the other tribe’s experts.

For purposes of addressing this problem, a key link in the tribalism-to-cognitive-distortion chain is this: The antagonism is directed not just toward the other tribe’s experts but toward their evidence. Seeing evidence inimical to your views arouses feelings of aversion, suspicion, perhaps even outrage.


Wright's a proselytizer for Buddhism -- or at least mindfulness meditation -- and while I do think it meshes well with cognitive science (and capitalism as well), the idea that even an elite will be able to overcome the evolutionary biases ingrained in our natures is not bloody likely.
   509. perros Posted: April 24, 2018 at 09:42 PM (#5659577)
We'll be glad for our innate tribalism if the aliens arrive tomorrow and they're like the aliens from alien(s). #JUSTSAYIN


Good luck!
   510. Stormy JE Posted: April 24, 2018 at 10:27 PM (#5659601)
Sara Carter:
BREAKING: DOJ will make the 6 months of missing texts that were eventually located by IG between Strzok and Page available to Congress sometime tonight or tomorrow, according to sources...developing
Sexting alert: Does Sammy have his box of Kleenex ready?
   511. tshipman Posted: April 24, 2018 at 10:43 PM (#5659612)
I like how Jason is just assuming that R members of congress will irresponsibly leak information ... while simultaneously hinting that Comey should be prosecuted for leaking.
   512. The Yankee Clapper Posted: April 24, 2018 at 11:08 PM (#5659622)
. . . assuming that R members of congress will irresponsibly leak information . . .

I wouldn't assume all of the FBI lovebirds texts are confidential.
   513. Zonk was SHOCKED by #6! Posted: April 24, 2018 at 11:13 PM (#5659624)
Wow.

I wasn't planning on sticking around for AZ-8 - I figured it would probably be ~10 points, hoping to keep it within five - but as expected, the early votes just got dumped and it's a terrible result for Lesko. She's up less than 6 points/9K lead - but the tea leaf reading based on the demographics of the early vote were pointing to an early double digit lead.

The early vote is expected to be as much as 80% of the total vote - and while they weren't counted till tonight, the numbers said that they were ~48% GOP/25% Dem with an average age of about 64. The thinking was Lesko was up 10-12 points and Tirpirneni would be hoping that the same day vote might whittle it down to 5-8 points.

Less than 6 points? Lesko probably still survives by a couple points, but it could end up being really damn close. Certainly closer than expected.

Oh, and the Dems flipped a couple more state legislative seats in NY.

Is the GOP panic button broken yet?
   514. Zonk was SHOCKED by #6! Posted: April 24, 2018 at 11:21 PM (#5659627)
Looks like NYT is calling AZ-8 -- sounds like e-day turnout was only about 19-20K and Tirpirneni isn't gonna win that 14K to 5K... but margin looks like it will definitely be under 5. Probably 3-4 points.

AZ-8... Sheriff Joe's homebase?


(((Harry Enten)))
‏Verified account @ForecasterEnten
16m16 minutes ago

Wanna know how weak Lesko winning by 6 would be? It's a *19* point swing off the partisan baseline in AZ-8 towards the Dems. The average swing in federal elections before tonight was 17 points.
5 replies 42 retweets 109 likes
   515. Zonk was SHOCKED by #6! Posted: April 24, 2018 at 11:26 PM (#5659631)
Dave Wasserman
@Redistrict
·
14m
The average Dem overperformance vs. Cook PVI in the 7 special elections so far: 9%. Tipirneni currently overperforming by 10%, and could be more when E-Day ballots are counted. #AZ08
   516. Srul Itza Posted: April 24, 2018 at 11:34 PM (#5659634)
They want to know among other things what the DNC should focus on.


A spot on the wall. Like a cat stalking a laser pointer.

That might serve to keep them out of trouble, while real politicians tried to win races.
   517. Ray (CTL) Posted: April 24, 2018 at 11:41 PM (#5659638)
The Supreme Court issued some decisions today,

Speaking of which, the Court split 5-4, along the cliched ideological lines... on the issue of whether when the Patent Office conducts an inter partes review of a patent's validity, it must consider all the claims raised by the petitioner or whether it may choose to only review some of those claims.


SAS Institute v. Iancu. And to be clear for the others, by "claims" you don't mean "arguments"; you mean patent claims, which are the numbered sentences at the end of the patent that define the scope of the protection (at least as a first pass; I'm vastly oversimplifying here). Basically in order to challenge a patent in an inter partes review (IPR) proceeding before the USPTO, the petitioner has to show that there is a "reasonable likelihood that the petitioner would prevail with respect to at least one of the claims challenged in the petition." The statute provides that "If... review is instituted and not dismissed,” at the end of the litigation the Patent Trial and Appeal Board “shall issue a final written decision with respect to the patentability of any patent claim challenged by the petitioner.” The USPTO had adopted a "partial institution" practice and was only reviewing some of the claims. The Court found that this violated the plain language of the statute, which says "any patent claim challenged."

(This is probably of substantive interest only to our Friendly Neighborhood Ray.) But to Andy's way of evaluating cases, this would somehow be a data point about partisan judges or something.


Well, the ideological undercurrent in this case was the Chevron doctrine. The majority (Gorsuch/Roberts/Kennedy/Thomas/Alito) did not defer to the agency (the USPTO). The dissent (Ginsburg/Breyer/Sotomayor/Kagan) would have.

In reaching its conclusion the majority found that there was no reason for Chevron deference here because they found that the statute was clear and unambiguous.

Thus the Court left the fate of the Chevron doctrine to be decided "on another day." There's been a groundswell in the government cases generally (not just patents) gearing up for a run at Chevron. The Court decided that this wasn't the case for it, but the future of the administrative state will very likely be a major issue in the coming years as the Court's conservative and liberal factions engage in a tug of war over it.

--

Actually the more interesting case was the other IPR decision handed down today, in Oil States.

In Oil States the issue was whether Inter Partes Review (IPR) was constitutional to begin with.

IPR was instituted by Congress with the America Invents Act (AIA) passed under Obama. The AIA brought the US patent system more in line with that of the rest of the world in moving more to a "first to file" system, and away from the "first to invent" system which was unique to the United States. IPR is a way of challenging the validity of granted patents in a PTO proceeding rather than in the federal courts. Basically it creates a mini trial. The Court today held that IPR proceedings are constitutional.

One of the main themes of this case -- at least in the run-up to it -- was property rights. There was an argument -- perhaps weak, but it had merit and indeed the more you looked the stronger it seemed -- that IPR was unconstitutional by abrogating private property rights through a non-Article III forum without a jury. In the run-up to this decision the general thinking was:

1* If the Court had respect for private property rights it would hold IPR unconstitutional; or

2* If the Court didn't have respect for private property rights -- and instead considered patent rights as public rights whereby the USPTO could seek the public's help to correct errors in granting patents -- it would uphold IPR.

In a 7-2 decision -- so not an ideological split, although the 2 justices who would have struck down IPR were Gorsuch and Roberts -- the Court chose Door #2, basically stating that patents are public rights for purposes of this question. However, the Court was careful to stress that the holding "should not be misconstrued as suggesting that patents are not property for the purposes of the Due Process Clause or Takings Clause."

(Perhaps Greg K would be the only one here interested in this but in Oil States the Court stated that it has previously recognized that “franchises” can be qualified by making them subject to the authority of an executive agency, and that the same reasoning applied here. The Court said that the fact that for some purposes patents are recognized as private property does not change this. The argument that only the courts should have the power to revoke patents based on English practice at the time of independence also fails because the Privy Council - an arm of the executive - had the power to revoke patents as well as the courts at that time and the Privy Council’s acting in this way was analogous to the role of the PTAB in IPR proceedings. At least per the Court's reasoning.)
   518. Ray (CTL) Posted: April 24, 2018 at 11:48 PM (#5659643)
Despite the bad rap that lawyers get from laypeople for being unethical, the math actually doesn't work for a lawyer to engage in unethical practices. To do what, get a fee in exchange for... losing your law license?

How many lawyers actually lose their licenses? I mean, somehow Michael Cohen has managed to remain in good standing with the bar, and he practices in a state that actually is awake. Granted, he only has three clients, but he comes off as a legal goon.


I know a couple of lawyers who had to respond to an inquiry about representations they made to the USPTO as to funds, but there was an innocent explanation and they cleared it up quickly (but not before they had to retain counsel -- and it was a USPTO inquiry not a bar inquiry). But I understand it's relatively rare for a lawyer to be disbarred. Comingling of funds will get a lawyer into trouble, or felony convictions. Run of the mill malpractice won't do it or many lawyers would find themselves disbarred. You really need an ethical violation, which general incompetence isn't.

Mueller's handling of Laurenza -- she hasn't been charged yet -- suggests she was duped. That may put her in the clear ethics-wise, but it's generally not something that speaks well of a professional's competence. Her odd situation has helped me understand why lawyers steer clear of "tough" clients, even ones that are sure to pay through the nose for legal representation. As you say, the math almost cannot work, because the lawyer is liable to end up in odd positions that become the subject matter of ethics case studies.


Clients who play fast and loose -- they're not the ones who have a law license to maintain, after all -- and won't listen to your advice at least to choose from the reasonable options you've laid out for them can be disasters. As I've said Trump is in this category. You would constantly find yourself in ethical quandaries representing him.
   519. The Yankee Clapper Posted: April 24, 2018 at 11:49 PM (#5659644)
Getting back to the allegations concerning Dr. Jackson, I see that the claim of "over prescribing" is apparently based on his dispensing sleeping pills to those requesting them on overseas flights during the Obama Administration. If that's all there is on that one, I don't see how anyone can find that to be disqualifying, assuming he was distributing an appropriate dosage. More information may still be needed, but some additional information came out tonight:
“Ronny does a great job — genuine enthusiasm, poised under pressure, incredible work ethic and follow through,” Obama scrawled on a 2016 report. “Ronny continues to inspire confidence with the care he provides to me, my family and my team. Continue to promote ahead of peers.” Obama recommended “early promote” in each of the three evaluations provided by the White House.

The White House also distributed two inspector general reports from 2012 and 2013, when Jackson was director of the White House Medical Unit and Jeffrey Kuhlman was physician to the president. The reports painted a strained relationship between the two that created problems throughout the unit, but seemed to place most of the blame on Kuhlman. Jackson replaced Kuhlman as physician to the president in July 2013.

Might be just a petty workplace squabble here. I'd be curious as to how much of the criticism of Jackson is sourced back to Kuhlman - the guy Obama replaced with Jackson.
   520. Ray (CTL) Posted: April 24, 2018 at 11:50 PM (#5659645)
Despite the bad rap that lawyers get from laypeople for being unethical


I don't see any reason why lawyers should be any more or any less ethical than anyone else.


The reason is that lawyers have something -- a law license -- to lose. That may not mean that they're innately more ethical but they certainly have incentive to act in a certain way. And they appear in front of judges or government agencies all the time and if they do something shady they might get called on it.
   521. Ray (CTL) Posted: April 24, 2018 at 11:55 PM (#5659649)
"The early sales figures for Mr. Comey’s book dwarfed other recent political best sellers."


Shame on the NY Times.
   522. Zonk was SHOCKED by #6! Posted: April 24, 2018 at 11:57 PM (#5659650)
Might be just a petty workplace squabble here. I'd be curious as to how much of the criticism of Jackson is sourced back to Kuhlman - the guy Obama replaced with Jackson.


And that "workplace" would be the Trump White House.

Lots of chatter that people inside the WH are responsible for the leaks in order to sink the nomination and that Republican Senator (and VA committee chairman) Johnny Isakson, who was a firm Shulkin supporter and felt disrespected by Trump when he tried to convince Trump not to fire Shulkin, was a willing accomplice.

Of course, to believe that - you'd have to believe the Trump administration is nothing but a ridiculous warmed over version of one his dumb reality shows and the few WH folks who know their heads from their asses have actually taken to lobbying Fox News in order to get through the boss on any given issue. And that would just be silly.
   523. Zonk was SHOCKED by #6! Posted: April 25, 2018 at 12:01 AM (#5659651)
A preview of the coming Meatloaf nomination for whatever cabinet spot opens up next....


Jackson was chosen with little vetting, angering several White House aides, including chief of staff John Kelly. And now a whisper campaign of allegations threatens to tank his nomination.

The episode offers a window into how the president’s impulsive decision-making has created problems for GOP senators as well as his own aides. On Tuesday, Senate Republicans were left to field questions about unsubstantiated allegations of misconduct against Jackson brought to the Veterans‘ Affairs Committee. One GOP senator, who requested anonymity, said the hope is that Trump withdraws the nomination sooner rather than later to avoid prolonging the pain.


When the two dicks and the blonde that man Fox in the AM start discussing some perfidy from Meatloaf's past, seemingly out the blue, just remeber you read it here first.
   524. Ray (CTL) Posted: April 25, 2018 at 12:02 AM (#5659652)
I guess Comey's not just out there "trying" to sell a book anymore.


Your Nightly Turley:

A Higher Priority: The Investigation of James Comey Raises Serious Questions Over His Leaking Of FBI Material

...Comey’s best-selling book, A Higher Loyalty: Truth, Lies, and Leadership, could prove tragically ironic if Comey showed a higher loyalty to himself in responding to his own firing rather than the investigation that he once headed. In the very least, there remains a serious question of Comey’s priorities in these matters.

Here is the column:

One day after the disclosure that the Justice Department inspector general has recommended criminal charges against former FBI deputy director Andrew McCabe, it has been confirmed that fired FBI director James Comey is under investigation by the same office for leaking information to the media. This disclosure followed the release of the Comey memos, which seriously undermined both Comey and his cadre of defenders. Four claims by Comey are now clearly refuted, and the memos reaffirm earlier allegations of serious misconduct.

James Comey was a leaker

For more than a year, various media experts have advanced dubious defenses for Comey, including the obvious problem that the man charged with investigating leaks became a leaker himself when as it suited him. Clearly, Comey removed the memos and did not allow for a predisclosure review of the material. Moreover, the memos were withheld by Comey’s surrogate, a Columbia University law professor, who reportedly read the information to the media.

...

The memos were FBI material

...

The plain fact, then and now, is that it’s hard to understand that it would be anything other than a record under federal rules.

...

There was no need to leak

...To the contrary, by disclosing the information, Comey alerted President Trump to the record of their conversations, making it less likely that Trump would contradict such a record.

Why [leak them]? The reason is obvious: It benefitted Comey. He was able to control the media narrative after his firing and shifted the focus to Trump’s conduct rather than his own. The inspector general recently concluded McCabe leaked information for his personal interest, not that of the public. It’s difficult to envision how the inspector general could come to any other conclusion about Comey’s leak.

The memos were classified

...

In his new book, Comey writes, “Ethical leaders choose a higher loyalty … over their own personal gain.” Yet, he opted for personal advantage in the leaking of his memos. He also rushed his book to print, even though the investigation he once headed is ongoing and he is a key witness. Even more remarkably, he never conferred with special counsel Robert Mueller, if nothing else as a courtesy, and especially since Comey’s public references to both disclosed and undisclosed evidence is obviously not beneficial to that investigation.
   525. Misirlou doesn't live in the restaurant Posted: April 25, 2018 at 12:02 AM (#5659653)
And that "workplace" would be the Trump White House.

Lots of chatter that people inside the WH are responsible for the leaks in order to sink the nomination and that Republican Senator (and VA committee chairman) Johnny Isakson, who was a firm Shulkin supporter and felt disrespected by Trump when he tried to convince Trump not to fire Shulkin, was a willing accomplice.

Of course, to believe that - you'd have to believe the Trump administration is nothing but a ridiculous warmed over version of one his dumb reality shows and the few WH folks who know their heads from their asses have actually taken to lobbying Fox News in order to get through the boss on any given issue. And that would just be silly.


I was going to respond to Clappy's ludicrous post, but you did better. I'll just comment that it's disgusting how Trump threw an otherwise honorable man under the bus to feed his own ego, and all Clappy can do is throw mud at Obama.
   526. Ray (CTL) Posted: April 25, 2018 at 12:05 AM (#5659655)
I'm still wondering what circles he travels in where Peter King isn't a "conservative".


I'll go along with you on this one. He's always seemed that way to me.
   527. Ray (CTL) Posted: April 25, 2018 at 12:08 AM (#5659656)
Here's evidence that the Michael Cohen investigation is NOT Russia-related...

Has anyone suggested it was?


Lol.
   528. Ray (CTL) Posted: April 25, 2018 at 12:12 AM (#5659658)
JE why are you salivating over the prospect of Comey hiring a lawyer? Do you think his memos weren't accurate or are you THIS upset about his inappropriate actions that hurt Hillary during the campaign?


Comey seems to have -- intentionally! -- leaked classified information.

He's also in a high profile legal dispute with McCabe that has gotten a bit not-a-good-look-y for both men.
   529. The Yankee Clapper Posted: April 25, 2018 at 12:13 AM (#5659659)
I'll just comment that it's disgusting how Trump threw an otherwise honorable man under the bus to feed his own ego, and all Clappy can do is throw mud at Obama.

Who got thrown under the bus? Kuhlman? How does he get to criticize Jackson without any accountability or discussion of potentially improper motivation? And where did I "throw mud at Obama"? I'm suggesting that Obama's repeated effusive praise of Dr. Jackson undermines the claim that Jackson engaged in misconduct on his watch. Are you saying Obama got it wrong or was asleep at the switch?
   530. Misirlou doesn't live in the restaurant Posted: April 25, 2018 at 12:14 AM (#5659660)
Getting back to the allegations concerning Dr. Jackson, I see that the claim of "over prescribing" is apparently based on his dispensing sleeping pills to those requesting them on overseas flights during the Obama Administration.


OK, I have now researched this, and hoo boy! Talk about sweeping things under the rug. The allegations are that Jackson would offer Ambien to anyone on an overseas flight who wanted it, and then offer an amphetamine to wake them up. Few if any who were his patients. His nickname was "the Candy Man". He should not only not be a Cabinet Secretary, he should lose his medical license.
   531. Zonk was SHOCKED by #6! Posted: April 25, 2018 at 12:15 AM (#5659662)
Patrick Fitzgerald and James Comey have separately confirmed this evening our story that Fitzgerald is a member of Comey’s personal legal team. Fitzgerald has been representing Comey since President Trump fired Comey as FBI director in May 2017, we have now learned.


At least per TPM.
   532. Misirlou doesn't live in the restaurant Posted: April 25, 2018 at 12:17 AM (#5659663)
Who got thrown under the bus?


Jackson. Trump did no vetting, so his skeletons are now out in public.


Are you saying Obama got it wrong


yes. Obama didn't know, but neither did he nominate him for a Senate confirmable post without vetting.

   533. Zonk was SHOCKED by #6! Posted: April 25, 2018 at 12:20 AM (#5659664)
Dave Wasserman
@Redistrict
·
4m
In '16, Joe Arpaio (R) carried #AZ08 by 5.0% despite losing his job by 11% county-wide. It's possible Debbie Lesko (R)'s final margin tonight could be even smaller. We'll see.


Dave Wasserman
@Redistrict
·
44s
There are 147 GOP-held House seats less Republican than #AZ08. It's time to start rethinking how many of those are truly safe in November.
   534. The Yankee Clapper Posted: April 25, 2018 at 12:24 AM (#5659665)
Are you saying Obama got it wrong

yes. Obama didn't know . . .

Obama certainly knew a lot more about Jackson than you, both first-hand and through staff, but, as usual, anything anti-Trump is believable to some here, even if they have to discard the long-held Obama Infallibility Doctrine. Interesting.
   535. Misirlou doesn't live in the restaurant Posted: April 25, 2018 at 12:26 AM (#5659666)
yes. Obama didn't know . . .


I meant to say Obama got it wrong. but Obama never nominated him for a cabinet post.

Your move.
   536. The Yankee Clapper Posted: April 25, 2018 at 12:37 AM (#5659671)
I meant to say Obama got it wrong.

I suppose it's possible, but again Obama had numerous first-hand interactions and input from family & staff, and his statements appear consistent with the two other Presidents Jackson served while assigned to the White House, with that assessment further reinforced by Jackson's military record. In contrast, you seem willing to repeat any smear for partisan advantage, and even throw mud at Obama to advance the anti-Trump narrative.
   537. Zonk was SHOCKED by #6! Posted: April 25, 2018 at 12:40 AM (#5659673)
Huh.

AZ Sos says about 19.5k total eday votes, but that doesn't include another 16k absentees that were handed in on election day. Still too big a hill to climb, but the first batch of eday results has Tirperneni winning them 55-45. She'd need roughly 63% of those outstanding votes to win it. But - it does look like we're heading to a "low single digits".

Despite everyone calling it, Hiral says that she won't be conceding tonight (the same day absentees won't be counted until tomorrow). Probably just gamesmanship - Tirp has already said she'll be rematching in November regardless.
   538. Misirlou doesn't live in the restaurant Posted: April 25, 2018 at 12:47 AM (#5659676)
I suppose it's possible, but again Obama had numerous first-hand interactions and input from family & staff, and his statements appear consistent with the two other Presidents Jackson served while assigned to the White House, with that assessment further reinforced by Jackson's military record. In contrast, you seem willing to repeat any smear for partisan advantage, and even throw mud at Obama to advance the anti-Trump narrative.


You claim to be be someone who once worked in the Federal Government. You should know, and likely do, that no one with credible allegations like this gets nominated for a Senate confirmable post, at least not without a credible defense. Why you continue to support the non vetting of a cabinet secretary is not surprising, but at the same time, it's surprising.
   539. The Yankee Clapper Posted: April 25, 2018 at 01:08 AM (#5659679)
You should know, and likely do, that no one with credible allegations like this gets nominated for a Senate confirmable post, at least not without a credible defense.

You seem to be assuming that these allegations, which never surfaced while Dr. Jackson served at the WH under 3 Presidents, or at any point in his military career, or even apparently in those two IG reports mentioned in #519, are credible. That remains to be seen, and the fact that 3 different Presidents from both parties - Obama for the longest period - found Jackson to be an outstanding employee may be far more relevant than the previous Administration's political aides trying to make something about being given a sleeping pill at their own request on an overseas flight.
   540. The Yankee Clapper Posted: April 25, 2018 at 01:36 AM (#5659686)
... but margin looks like it will definitely be under 5. Probably 3-4 points

Nope, 5.2% now with all precincts reporting. Never budged much from the early votes.
   541. Chicago Joe Posted: April 25, 2018 at 01:45 AM (#5659688)
Clapper, it seems like the sources are from this administration.
   542. Count Posted: April 25, 2018 at 01:47 AM (#5659689)
Comey seems to have -- intentionally! -- leaked classified information.

He's also in a high profile legal dispute with McCabe that has gotten a bit not-a-good-look-y for both men.


No he didn't. And what "legal dispute" with McCabe? Comey isn't the one who got in trouble and he seems to be in zero legal jeopardy. But in any event the question was why JE would be excited by the idea of Comey being in trouble, which JE didn't really answer, per usual. Comey's bad acts as FBI director which helped swing the election to Trump were terrible, of course, but I doubt that's why JE is hoping that Comey gets in trouble.
   543. Count Posted: April 25, 2018 at 01:49 AM (#5659690)
Also you think Libby's pardon wss related to Comey hiring his former prosecutor as a lawyer?
I'm pretty confident Trump did it as a giant f-u to Comey and his buddy Fitzgerald.
If true wouldn't that be a gross abuse of the pardon power?
Is there really such a thing?


Of course there is. Do you have zero principles now? You are really gleeful about the idea that the President would pardon someone just as a #### you to the FBI director he fired to shut down an investigation you support?
   544. Count Posted: April 25, 2018 at 01:56 AM (#5659692)
Do you think his memos weren't accurate or are you THIS upset about his inappropriate actions that hurt Hillary during the campaign?

As I've said repeatedly, Comey was and is out for Comey. He's the Toby Esterhase of the 2016 election and aftermath.

EDIT: I've now read the Comey memos twice. They illustrate Trump being his usual clown self, but wanting all collusion charges checked out and he certainly wasn't obstructing justice.


The full question which you snipped out (I don't think maliciously) was "JE why are you salivating over the prospect of Comey hiring a lawyer? Do you think his memos weren't accurate or are you THIS upset about his inappropriate actions that hurt Hillary during the campaign?"

You didn't answer it - why are you happy about the idea of Comey hiring a lawyer? What is it you think Comey did wrong? You know he was fired to obstruct the Russia investigation, you believe the Russia investigation is valid, yet you want Comey to go down and/or to jail? What the hell?

So you don't think the Comey memos were dishonest or an inaccurate recounting. Very curious which lines you think show Trump wanted "all collusion charges checked out" (and the memo recounts the Flynn request which was obstructive and part of a wider course of conduct that included firing Comey, repeatedly calling for investigation to shut down, etc).

What i'm getting at with a lot of these questions is that partisanship has so curdled you that you have resorted to rooting against anyone who investigates or opposes Trump without thinking it through at all. It's really gross particularly given that you know Trump wants to be an authoritarian. In six months or fewer you're going to be posting conspiracy theories about Mueller himself (maybe some unearthed Soros connection) and hoping he goes to jail. Lock them up!
   545. Count Posted: April 25, 2018 at 01:58 AM (#5659693)
Broader issue is that Trump doesn't give a #### about veterans and hired a doctor he likes (and one that was indeed broadly liked by members of both parties, though not qualified to be head of the VA and obviously not fully vetted) instead of looking for a real candidate for the VA. It's like a 500th tier Trump scandal, granted.
   546. Chicago Joe Posted: April 25, 2018 at 02:16 AM (#5659695)
Congrats to Clapper on the AZ-8 result! Or should I say, поздравления!
   547. tshipman Posted: April 25, 2018 at 02:19 AM (#5659696)
You seem to be assuming that these allegations, which never surfaced while Dr. Jackson served at the WH under 3 Presidents, or at any point in his military career, or even apparently in those two IG reports mentioned in #519, are credible. That remains to be seen, and the fact that 3 different Presidents from both parties - Obama for the longest period - found Jackson to be an outstanding employee may be far more relevant than the previous Administration's political aides trying to make something about being given a sleeping pill at their own request on an overseas flight.


I have an outstanding employee at work. Guess what? They're not qualified to run one of the largest federal agencies.
   548. The Yankee Clapper Posted: April 25, 2018 at 04:05 AM (#5659703)
Broader issue is that Trump doesn't give a #### about veterans . . .

Trump Moves To Cancel Student Loan Debt For Disabled Veterans:
The Department of Education announced Monday that it will partner with the Department of Veteran Affairs to identify disabled student loan borrowers who are eligible for debt forgiveness. Such borrowers will be notified of their potential eligibility in the mail and will also receive a Total and Permanent Disability Discharge application, the avenue though which borrowers with severe physical impairments are approved to erase their debt.
. . .
Recent changes in the tax law would benefit disabled veterans whose loans are discharged under the new initiative. A provision in the new tax code waives federal income taxes on forgiven education debt for permanently disabled people.

Historically, the IRS considered such cancelled debt as taxable income. For example, in 2017 the Lansing State Journal told the story of a veteran who had his $223,000 in student loan debt erased — only to receive a tax bill for around $62,000.

Seems like a better deal than disabled veterans got under prior administrations.
   549. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: April 25, 2018 at 05:00 AM (#5659704)
Of course there is. Do you have zero principles now? You are really gleeful about the idea that the President would pardon someone just as a #### you to the FBI director he fired to shut down an investigation you support?


Spite is the primary motivation of Trump and his Stupids.
   550. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: April 25, 2018 at 05:22 AM (#5659705)
Consider, again, climate change. Pinker is not under the illusion that many members of his (and my) climate-change tribe are under: that people in our tribe have objectively assessed the evidence, whereas climate change skeptics have for some reason failed to do that. As with most issues, few people in either tribe have looked closely at the actual evidence. On both sides, most people are just trusting their tribe’s designated experts.


Oh sure, all you snobs *say* you know the earth is round but I bet there isn’t a single one of you who have circumnavigated the earth in a spaceship. I bet you haven’t even made an effort to repeat Francis Galton’s experiment with the rods. You’re just tribal stooges.
   551. Ishmael Posted: April 25, 2018 at 06:36 AM (#5659708)
The government prohibits citizens from taking their young child to Italy for desperately needed medical treatment.

Jason, I don’t think the Vatican hospital is offering any new treatment as such, my understanding is that they are just prepared to put him back on life support.

These kinds of tragic cases, Charlie Gard is another recent one that comes to mind, would be fascinating if we could view them from some imaginary position unaffected by empathy for the parents and doctors involved. They distil so many questions about medical ethics, as well as personhood and existence in general. As it is I find them painful to try to obtain the necessary perspective to think seriously about.

If you’re really interested in the criteria for withholding life support, or deciding treatment options in apparently hopeless cases, there’s a good series of posts on the case at the University of Oxford Practical Ethics blog. If you click around, some of them get into the similarities and differences between the US and UK on these questions.

For a more US-centric perspective on end-of-life questions, that New Yorker piece on the criteria for declarations of death that Perros linked a little while ago is an excellent read.
   552. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: April 25, 2018 at 06:41 AM (#5659709)
Jason, I don’t think the Vatican hospital is offering any new treatment as such


An IV full of water from Lourdes?
   553. perros Posted: April 25, 2018 at 07:16 AM (#5659711)
treatment options in apparently hopeless cases

Ultimately, we're all hopeless cases.

Regardless, we have reached a point where medical treatment can extend lifespans significantly -- but at what expense? The troubling thing about the Evans case is the UK is both withdrawing life support AND denying removal to those who would provide it in the best interests of the child.

I do want to go back to the New Yorker case later. The girl might not have ended up legally dead if she received good post-operative care. The hospital in question had a financial interest in killing her off, and the criteria for brain dead was arbitrary based upon the sensitivity of their instruments and old scientific criteria.

Using the magic word "science" does not avoid either the actual practice of science and ethical medical practice.
   554. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: April 25, 2018 at 07:24 AM (#5659712)
treatment options in apparently hopeless cases

Ultimately, we're all hopeless cases


Woah...

*puts down bong*
   555. -- Posted: April 25, 2018 at 07:30 AM (#5659713)
Gotta hand it to Comey for monetizing his cut of the TDS market. Smart move. Could have probably done it without the potential/likely crimes and whatnot, but still a fundamentally smart move.
   556. -- Posted: April 25, 2018 at 07:35 AM (#5659714)
But in any event the question was why JE would be excited by the idea of Comey being in trouble, which JE didn't really answer, per usual.


For the same reasons many people, including on the left, would have been "excited" if J. Edgar Hoover got into trouble for on-the-job misconduct related to his interactions with elected and other civilians.

Seriously -- this isn't hard to figure out. You and yours have just reverted to primitive tribalism, though, and so you're completely blinded to it.
   557. Gonfalon Bubble Posted: April 25, 2018 at 07:56 AM (#5659716)
Seven midterm cycles: the average percentage swing in all special elections, followed by the subsequent national swing in the midterm election:
1994: R+9 specials, R+7 midterms

1998: D+1 specials, R+1 midterms

2002: no swing specials, R+5 midterms

2006: D+15 specials, D+8 midterms

2010: R+6 specials, R+7 midterms

2014: R+4 specials, R+6 midterms

2018: D+18 specials, stay tuned

Given the current majority and the last few cycles of voting results, a swing of +7 or +8 would be expected to flip the House.

Yesterday's House special election in Arizona reportedly featured the same Republican voter turnout and the same ratio of R to D voters as that district's 2014 midterm election, in which the Republican got 76% and there was no Democratic candidate. (The runner-up represented the Americans Elect Party.) GOP winner Debbie Lesko was a totally acceptable and well-financed candidate in an ideal GOP stronghold, who ran a good race with no scandals or screw-ups, while outspending her opponent by more than 2 to 1. And she won a 25% margin district by 5.2%.

The big loser in Arizona last night wasn't Democratic opponent Hiral Tipirneni. It was the state's presumable Republican nominee for Senator, Kelli Ward, and Arizona Governor Doug Ducey.
   558. Zonk was SHOCKED by #6! Posted: April 25, 2018 at 08:36 AM (#5659728)
Nope, 5.2% now with all precincts reporting. Never budged much from the early votes.


I guess just having a slightly better mustache than Rick Saccone makes all the difference!
   559. ERROR---Jolly Old St. Nick Posted: April 25, 2018 at 08:40 AM (#5659729)
Why [leak them]? The reason is obvious: It benefitted Comey. He was able to control the media narrative after his firing and shifted the focus to Trump’s conduct rather than his own.

Maybe it's because Trump's been waging war against the truth for longer than anyone can remember, and if Comey had simply let Trump's version of their meeting sit there without some sort of documented rebuttal the narrative would've been "Trump called Comey's bluff".

But then Turley gives his game away right there, when he implies that the focus during this entire episode should always be on Comey rather than on Trump. How he distinguishes himself from any garden variety GOP hack, or from Trump himself, is getting harder and harder to discern.
   560. Mellow Mouse, Benevolent Space Tyrant Posted: April 25, 2018 at 09:13 AM (#5659743)
Why [leak them]? The reason is obvious


This is a funny question. Thus far pretty much everything around the Trump administration leaks. It is - according to all accounts - the leaky administration in modern history. Advisors seemingly are arguing policy differences by leaking stuff to the media so Trump sees it. Everyone in the administration is leaking and in the face of such it is not hard to imagine why those outside it would feel the urge/compulsion to leak as well in order to level the playing field a bit.

I am not actually all that opposed to all the leaks. I think a more transparent government is better in a variety of ways (and worse in a few as well) and even the "secret" stuff is often way over classified, which is dumb.
   561. Zonk was SHOCKED by #6! Posted: April 25, 2018 at 09:16 AM (#5659746)
Yesterday's House special election in Arizona reportedly featured the same Republican voter turnout and the same ratio of R to D voters as that district's 2014 midterm election, in which the Republican got 76% and there was no Democratic candidate. (The runner-up represented the Americans Elect Party.) GOP winner Debbie Lesko was a totally acceptable and well-financed candidate in an ideal GOP stronghold, who ran a good race with no scandals or screw-ups, while outspending her opponent by more than 2 to 1. And she won a 25% margin district by 5.2%.


Winning is winning and losing is losing, but I think this result just might be the most encouraging of the Trump-era special elections. The Alabama Senate win was far and away the most important. PA-18 the most successful.... But for my money -

- This was probably one of, if not THE worst seat for Democrats among the trump-era special elections. Very old. Very white. Very Red. There wasn't an "ancestral Democratic" roots like PA-18. It wasn't particularly well-educated like GA-6. It's a very red, very "Trumpublican friendly" district.

- Unlike KS-4 or SC-3, this surely didn't just stealthy "sneak up" on the GOP. Alarm bells had been ringing for some time.

- Unlike Lamb or Ossoff - Tiripneni wasn't running with an online ATM. I think she DID actually outraise Lesko (individually), so she wasn't lacking for money, but she was just "well-funded"... not astronomically smashing congressional race fundraising records. In effect, she was just closer to the money baseline most credible Democratic challengers will have in the fall; not a massive warchest.

- The GOP spent pretty heavily - VERY heavy for a district as red as AZ-8 - various PACs and GOP apparatuses dropped more than a million dollars in this race. The only outside spending on the blue side was a PAC that dropped 100k on the race, though it wasn't clear what they spent it on (i.e., they didn't run ads). Thanks to her own fundraising, Tiripneni didn't get 'badly outspent'... but with nearly 150+ incumbents in purpler/bluer districts, this is not a sustainable spend schema.

- Unlike Lamb, Tiripneni probably is not a good 'fit' for this district (though, I loved her directly taking on this idea)... immigrant, ran on one very progressive issue (universal healthcare), didn't take on EVERY prog punch point (some lefties online oversell the extent to which she ran as a 'progressive'), but if you were to cook up a D challenger in a lab, an Indian immigrant running a Bernie Sanders campaign wouldn't be it.

- Tiripneni was a true political neophyte. She didn't have a family legacy of politics like Lamb, experience working for a politico like Ossoff, etc. She's not a neophyte anymore - and she's running again this fall.

- As a certain poster has occasionally intoned - the generic congressional ballot had supposedly stagnated, if not fallen back a point here or there. Yet - the "only poll that matters" actually showed Democratic performance increasing compared to prior over-performs. The results were the opposite of what one might have thought based on day-to-day, week-to-week generic ballot tracking.

- Tirpirneni really cleaned up with independents - sounds like she won indies better than 2-1. She also got a fair number of GOP crossovers. Not all "red" districts" are also "loyal Republican" districts... i.e., not all the districts that consistently give Republicans wins also have a 2-1 GOP party registration advantage.

Yeah yeah... she still lost.

But this was all kinds of good news for Democrats. They can compete EVERYWHERE with ANY candidate.

But if I were a Republican, this one would scare me more than any of the prior races... including Lamb/Saccone
   562. Gonfalon Bubble Posted: April 25, 2018 at 09:18 AM (#5659747)
GOP pollster Mike Noble celebrates his party's huge victory in Arizona: "This district isn't supposed to be competitive, and so to see this margin, especially with the Republicans pouring in resources here... Republicans shouldn't be hitting the alarm, they should be slamming it."
   563. Gonfalon Bubble Posted: April 25, 2018 at 09:23 AM (#5659749)
538.com:
[Its] lack of distinctiveness probably makes Arizona 8 a more reliable data point [than previous special elections]. There are no particular contingencies related to the candidates or the campaigns or the demographics of the district that complicate the outcome or give many excuses for it.

...The election represents another really bad data point for the GOP. Lesko’s margin of victory was only 5 percentage points in a district that typically votes Republican by much, much more than that. The outcome represented a 20-point swing toward Democrats relative to the district’s FiveThirtyEight partisan lean, which is derived from how the it voted for president in 2016 and 2012 relative to the country.

...If Republicans are winning by only 5 points in this sort of extremely red district in November, dozens of more competitive seats will flop to Democrats — more than enough for them to take the House.

...The bigger question is what to make of the disparity between the overwhelming swing toward Democrats so far in special election results — which would imply a Democratic wave on par with the historic Republican years of 1994 and 2010 — and the considerably more modest one suggested by the generic Congressional ballot, which shows Democrats ahead by only 7 points and implies that the battle for House control is roughly a toss-up. One plausible answer is that the generic ballot will shift further toward Democrats once voters become more engaged with the campaign in their respective districts and pollsters switch over to likely voter models. Still, both the generic ballot and special election results (when taken in the aggregate) are fairly reliable indicators. Rather than choosing between them, it’s best to consider both.
   564. Mellow Mouse, Benevolent Space Tyrant Posted: April 25, 2018 at 09:30 AM (#5659751)
It will be very disappointing if Democrats don't flip the House, keep Senate losses to 1 or less, and make substantial gains in various state houses around the nation.

If all that happens (the good stuff), especially if the Senate flips (which is still a bit of a long shot IMO) it will be very interesting to see how Trump responds, how the GOP in general respond.
   565. Zonk was SHOCKED by #6! Posted: April 25, 2018 at 09:37 AM (#5659758)
We're reaching the point where further special elections have little value beyond confirming the wave remains a-coming, but I think there are still two more:

Texas will have a relatively 'snap' election on June 30 for Blake Farenthold's old seat. I think the filing deadline is actually this Friday (the special election was just announced yesterday). TX-27 is R+13 - should be safe, but it did have a longtime D Rep (under different boundaries) and it's pretty Hispanic. Certainly winnable for Democrats. Indeed, average over-perform probably flips it. However, the most interesting implication is probably for the Cruz-Beto race (just as the happiest person with the AZ-8 results just might be Krysten Sinema).

Then, there's a late summer special (August 8, I think?) for OH-12 (John Kasich's old seat). This one is only R+8 - and given that it comes so late, it will probably serve as little more than a fall campaign warmup.
   566. BrianBrianson Posted: April 25, 2018 at 09:54 AM (#5659771)
Regardless, we have reached a point where medical treatment can extend lifespans significantly -- but at what expense? The troubling thing about the Evans case is the UK is both withdrawing life support AND denying removal to those who would provide it in the best interests of the child.


Expense is a bit of an off word here. Heroic spending beyond what, say, they or their family can ever contribute to society? Sure. Merely dragging out their agonising death? Ew, no.
   567. Gonfalon Bubble Posted: April 25, 2018 at 09:56 AM (#5659773)
#564:
It will be very disappointing if Democrats don't....keep Senate losses to 1 or less


To abuse the "blue wave" metaphor, the 2018 Republican Senate map is not a beachfront to be eroded, it's firm iron girders that would have to be blasted and wrenched out of the ground. A regular old "historical average" House-flipping Dem wave should never be enough to undo this uniquely, absurdly favorable Senate map.

It would be a phenomenal achievement or a catastrophic failure (depending on your rah-rah colors) if the Democrats somehow lost just 1 Senate seat. And that's no matter how these special elections are trending in lockstep. We're supposed to be looking at a minimum +4 to +6 pickup for the Republicans, even while assuming Democrats do reasonably, midterm-y well elsewhere.

Instead, we're reading about Mitch McConnell abandoning any pretense of a legislative agenda other than pursuing judicial confirmations in the hundred days he worries he might have remaining as Majority Leader. And that is insane.
   568. Zonk was SHOCKED by #6! Posted: April 25, 2018 at 10:07 AM (#5659780)
If all that happens (the good stuff), especially if the Senate flips (which is still a bit of a long shot IMO) it will be very interesting to see how Trump responds, how the GOP in general respond.


Sunny optimist I am, I think flipping the Senate is moving from "longshot" to underdog. The map is so tough that moving beyond "underdog" in terms of expectations is likely impossible. However, thanks to Greitens, Hawley seems to be imploding for McCaskill. As much as Clapper might want to make hay of Manchin aligned groups supporting Don the miner murderer - the fact is that if Manchin is truly concerned, his voting record doesn't show it. The Indiana primary is getting ugly on the GOP side. I feel better and better about Heitkamp. The only D seat at risk that I actually worry might be moving the other way is actually Florida. Casey, Brown, and Tester feel increasingly safer (I never expect them to be 'safe', but they feel like increasingly solid leans).

Bredesen seems to be ahead in Tennessee - Bob Corker's apostasy included.

The AZ-8 result is excellent news for Sinema.

I think Rosen is actually an MOE slight favorite over Heller (if he even survives his primary).

I still hold out hope for Beto - that's my longshot bet - and as noted above, I think that's the big thing to watch in the TX-27 special.

I'd like to see another race pop into competitive... I sure wish the Dems could convince MS AG Jim Hood to jump into one of the Mississippi races, but he seems dead set on running for governor in 2019. Pity. Especially if he ran for the Cochrane seat against likely nominee and nut Chris McDaniel, I think he'd actually be a slight favorite. I still think filling out the Cochrane term would be perfect for Ray Mabus.

   569. Zonk was SHOCKED by #6! Posted: April 25, 2018 at 10:15 AM (#5659786)
Don Blankenship... not going quietly!

Speaking on a West Virginia radio show on Monday, Blankenship suggested McConnell has a conflict of interest when it comes to foreign relations because his wife, Secretary of Transportation Elaine Chao, was born in Taipei in 1953. Chao’s father is a “wealthy Chinaperson,” said Blankenship, “And there’s a lot of connections to some of the brass, in you will, in China.


With West Virginia's closed primary and the party registration deadline passed, I'm sure this is probably Manchin's fault...
   570. Gonfalon Bubble Posted: April 25, 2018 at 10:22 AM (#5659794)
However, thanks to Greitens, Hawley seems to be imploding for McCaskill.


Man, there's a loving cloud hovering over McCaskill. She's perennially been on her way out the door for what seems like twenty years now. Her run of luck reminds us of the old Casey Stengel line about Yogi Berra: "He'd fall in a sewer and come up with a gold watch."
   571. Shredder Posted: April 25, 2018 at 10:27 AM (#5659800)
I have an outstanding employee at work. Guess what? They're not qualified to run one of the largest federal agencies.
One of the WH spokeflunkies was on NPR this morning touting Jackson's bona fides, among which were his "countless tours of duty". If our federal agencies have so badly fallen apart that we no longer possess the ability to count the tours of duty served by a particular serviceman, perhaps it no longer matters who leads them.
   572. Zonk was SHOCKED by #6! Posted: April 25, 2018 at 10:27 AM (#5659802)
Man, there's a loving cloud hovering over McCaskill. She's perennially been on her way out the door for what seems like twenty years now. Her run of luck reminds us of the old Casey Stengel line about Yogi Berra: "He'd fall in a sewer and come up with a gold watch."


No doubt - though, like Berra - she's got some skills to go with that luck...
   573. perros Posted: April 25, 2018 at 10:34 AM (#5659806)

Expense is a bit of an off word here. Heroic spending beyond what, say, they or their family can ever contribute to society? Sure. Merely dragging out their agonising death? Ew, no.

It's not much of a slippery slope to imagine no spending on non-contributors to society, starting with crippled infants and certainly extending to all of those lonely old people with no families to care. Anecdotally speaking, if you enter a US hospital with no family to ensure quality care, might as well go ahead and send you down to the basement.

As for agonizing death, they tried to suffocate Kid Evans. Was 'sposed to take fifteen minutes.

Yet he remains in the picture.
   574. Zonk was SHOCKED by #6! Posted: April 25, 2018 at 10:35 AM (#5659808)
Nobody would have guessed...

How the Trump Show Gets Old


Most of the rest of the discussion was fawning and unsurprising—until the 41-minute mark. That’s when Bush pointed out an uncomfortable numerical fact: Some 40 million people had watched parts of the first season finale. For the first episode of the second season, though, that number had plummeted. Barely one-third as many viewers tuned in. “Be honest with me,” Bush said to his guests. “Were you thinking to yourself, Oh, jeez?” He wondered if they were “nervous.”

Burnett, clad in sort of “Survivor” chic—blue jeans, light blazer, shell necklace—copped to some concern. “Hearing less than 20 million people,” Burnett told Bush, “pissed me off.”

Not Trump. What pissed him off was the question. Outfitted in his own uniform—dark suit, white shirt, long tie—Trump gave a response as characteristic as his dress. He blamed having to go up against an NFL game. Bush pressed him, and Trump turned belligerent. “No—excuse me,” he said, using a verbal stop sign he would make famous in debates and contentious TV interviews during his presidential campaign. Trump then unleashed a meandering, excuse-laden torrent that mentioned snow, golf and parents taking their kids to school. “So, I don’t know what the purpose of the question is,” he said.


The boorish, crude, loudmouth eventually wears thin? Who would ever guess that.

No signs of Trump-hating fatigue... I have every confidence that us TDSers can outlast the Trumpkins.
   575. DavidFoss Posted: April 25, 2018 at 10:39 AM (#5659810)
For the first episode of the second season, though, that number had plummeted.

Not the best analogy. Survivor is currently on season 36 and have been renewed for seasons 37 & 38.
   576. The Interdimensional Council of Rickey!'s Posted: April 25, 2018 at 10:41 AM (#5659813)
It's not much of a slippery slope to imagine no spending on non-contributors to society, starting with crippled infants and certainly extending to all of those lonely old people with no families to care.


Are they Republican crippled infants?
   577. perros Posted: April 25, 2018 at 10:46 AM (#5659819)
The kid in the New Yorker story is a fat Black girl. Rich white people are not only not likely to be euthenized, they're first in line for technological life extension.
   578. McCoy Posted: April 25, 2018 at 10:50 AM (#5659821)
To abuse the "blue wave" metaphor, the 2018 Republican Senate map is not a beachfront to be eroded, it's firm iron girders that would have to be blasted and wrenched out of the ground. A regular old "historical average" House-flipping Dem wave should never be enough to undo this uniquely, absurdly favorable Senate map.

It would be a phenomenal achievement or a catastrophic failure (depending on your rah-rah colors) if the Democrats somehow lost just 1 Senate seat. And that's no matter how these special elections are trending in lockstep. We're supposed to be looking at a minimum +4 to +6 pickup for the Republicans, even while assuming Democrats do reasonably, midterm-y well elsewhere.

Instead, we're reading about Mitch McConnell abandoning any pretense of a legislative agenda other than pursuing judicial confirmations in the hundred days he worries he might have remaining as Majority Leader. And that is insane.


I was just thinking today that for the Democrats goal #1 in the Senate would be to lose only 2 seats in 2018. If they can do better than that they had a terrific election and they set themselves up nicely for 2020. Goal #2 is probably split the Senate and Goal #3 would be to take the Senate. Goals #2 and #3 are a tall order and you know the GOP is in trouble if the Dems achieve those goals.
   579. perros Posted: April 25, 2018 at 10:55 AM (#5659827)
To be fair, while California declared her dead, New Jersey law allowed her to live, with Medicaid paying, I believe.

In the UK case, it's probably safe to say the British court (gov't) did not want to cede authority to Italians or any other Roman interloper. Though they have allowed rich #### Mike Bloomberg to resurrect London's temple of Mithras.
   580. Traderdave Posted: April 25, 2018 at 11:15 AM (#5659845)

How the Trump Show Gets Old


Most of the rest of the discussion was fawning and unsurprising—until the 41-minute mark. That’s when Bush pointed out an uncomfortable numerical fact: Some 40 million people had watched parts of the first season finale. For the first episode of the second season, though, that number had plummeted. Barely one-third as many viewers tuned in. “Be honest with me,” Bush said to his guests. “Were you thinking to yourself, Oh, jeez?” He wondered if they were “nervous.”

Burnett, clad in sort of “Survivor” chic—blue jeans, light blazer, shell necklace—copped to some concern. “Hearing less than 20 million people,” Burnett told Bush, “pissed me off.”

Not Trump. What pissed him off was the question. Outfitted in his own uniform—dark suit, white shirt, long tie—Trump gave a response as characteristic as his dress. He blamed having to go up against an NFL game. Bush pressed him, and Trump turned belligerent. “No—excuse me,” he said, using a verbal stop sign he would make famous in debates and contentious TV interviews during his presidential campaign. Trump then unleashed a meandering, excuse-laden torrent that mentioned snow, golf and parents taking their kids to school. “So, I don’t know what the purpose of the question is,” he said.


The boorish, crude, loudmouth eventually wears thin? Who would ever guess that.



So Trump's best baseball comp is Billy Martin. Thin skinned ass hole who makes a splash in his first season but whose act tires quickly.
   581. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: April 25, 2018 at 11:21 AM (#5659851)

"The early sales figures for Mr. Comey’s book dwarfed other recent political best sellers."

Shame on the NY Times.
? Is the politically correct term "midgeted" now, or something?
   582. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: April 25, 2018 at 11:31 AM (#5659863)


Big SCOTUS case today is on the Muslim notaban. We'll soon find out... nothing, really. Today is oral argument, and lots of people will pretend they know from the questions that are asked who's going to prevail, but that's not very reliable. My prediction w/o seeing the transcript is that much of the notaban will be upheld with a splintered decision -- but we won't know that for some time.
   583. Zonk was SHOCKED by #6! Posted: April 25, 2018 at 11:37 AM (#5659866)
I was just thinking today that for the Democrats goal #1 in the Senate would be to lose only 2 seats in 2018. If they can do better than that they had a terrific election and they set themselves up nicely for 2020. Goal #2 is probably split the Senate and Goal #3 would be to take the Senate. Goals #2 and #3 are a tall order and you know the GOP is in trouble if the Dems achieve those goals.


Lose two or come out "only" -2?

If we're setting over/under totals - I think I'd put the line more at -1 (maybe even -0.5). As much there are still a good 10 Dems at risk and perhaps as many as 3-5 unlikely to move out of toss-up, I do think both NV and AZ are moving slightly towards lean blue.

In point of fact, I see some rather odd parallels to 2006.... That was also - adjusting for then-prevailing expectations 12 years ago - supposed to a high climb. The Dems needed +6 and the thinking was that it would take an inside straight to win all 6 seats they needed. Virginia, at the time, was still in fairly early stages of 'purpling'. The Dems figured to need to take out a couple incumbents in purple midwest states (DeWine in Ohio, Santorum in PA). They had the popular Lincoln Chafee targeted in Rhode Island. And then they had some 'reaches' - Burns/Tester in Montana, Ford/Frist in Tennessee, Talent/McCaskill in Missouri, and Pederson/Kyl in Arizona.

In effect, the thinking was that the Dems were likely to gain seats - but more likely 3 to 5. Of the races that remained competitive into the fall - they basically needed to win them all... and they did (depending on where you put Frist/Ford, where Ford obviously lost by a couple points).

The difference this time, of course, is that there are just far fewer legitimate targets (and far more endangered Dems) - and it'll be more a defensive fight than offensive.

But then, I think the environment is better for the Dems in 2018 vs 2006, too.

   584. Traderdave Posted: April 25, 2018 at 11:41 AM (#5659869)
   585. DavidFoss Posted: April 25, 2018 at 11:48 AM (#5659876)
The difference this time, of course, is that there are just far fewer legitimate targets (and far more endangered Dems) - and it'll be more a defensive fight than offensive.

Well, yeah. That was 12 years ago, so these are the exact same Senate seats! They need to repeat 2006 just to hold serve. It's already 25-8 D's & I's over R's. It's hard to gain from that.
   586. perros Posted: April 25, 2018 at 11:54 AM (#5659883)

So Trump's best baseball comp is Billy Martin. Thin skinned ass hole who makes a splash in his first season but whose act tires quickly.

Wouldn't Trump have to go on to be Prez for five other countries? DJT is Steinbrenner as President. Billy Martin would kick his teetotalin' ass.
   587. BrianBrianson Posted: April 25, 2018 at 11:57 AM (#5659884)
Knocked on someone's door when I was drunk?

Yeah, I've done that.

Or is "bang" here a euphamism for sex? I will confess, I've never done that on a door.

But if being the president's doctor means I can't ever be drunk, I don't even know why I got a doctorate.
   588. Zonk was SHOCKED by #6! Posted: April 25, 2018 at 12:13 PM (#5659906)
The difference this time, of course, is that there are just far fewer legitimate targets (and far more endangered Dems) - and it'll be more a defensive fight than offensive.

Well, yeah. That was 12 years ago, so these are the exact same Senate seats! They need to repeat 2006 just to hold serve. It's already 25-8 D's & I's over R's. It's hard to gain from that.


Sure - but I guess my point is that you put yourself back in a 2006 context. Granted, my point is leaning awfully hard on the idea that Virginia was still a red state trending purple with lots of watchers waiting for purple confirmation - but I'd also point to Montana and even Missouri (a purple state moving red - remember when Missouri was supposedly a national bellwether?).

Sort of adjacent - the 538 chat this morning was about state coloration flips... and especially - the question of "one-offs" versus true trends.

Despite the meatgrinder map, I do think there are perhaps as many as three states (depending on whether you'd call Nevada already blue) where they're looking to seriously test some long-awaited 'tinting' harbingers. Rosen (NV), Sinema and Beto are all fine candidates, but none are one-off rock stars (I'd put that label on Bredesen*). I guess, just beyond the scoreboard - it will be interesting to see if there's one or two "2006 Virginias" this cycle. Of course, with albaTrump - there's obviously a wildcard that is going to be a potential skew factor/warning not to read too much in terms of lasting trends.

*While I think Bredesen will win TN, I do think there's an "Evan Bayh" risk... though, Bredesen, I think has a deeper popularity than Bayh's wider popularity. Bayh came into prominence via his rather legendary dad and was really more of an inoffensive, unobtrusive Dem powerhouse when he was winning the gov's mansion and senate seat. I think his comeback flopped because sans the "omnipresent comfort" level he built - which he obviously lost when he left the scene for a few cycles - there just really wasn't a lot there to reignite.
   589. SouthSideRyan Posted: April 25, 2018 at 12:27 PM (#5659936)
It's 26-9 (D&I-R) for the record.
   590. DavidFoss Posted: April 25, 2018 at 12:29 PM (#5659940)
It's 26-9 (D&I-R) for the record.

OK thanks. I was looking at Class One seats.

There might be special elections like Tina Smith (drawing a blank on the others).
   591. The usual palaver and twaddle (Met Fan Charlie) Posted: April 25, 2018 at 12:30 PM (#5659943)
510

BREAKING: DOJ will make the 6 months of missing texts that were eventually located by IG between Strzok and Page available to Congress sometime tonight or tomorrow, according to sources...developing


Can't wait to parse 5,739 texts that basically say, "No, you're schmoopie..."
   592. SouthSideRyan Posted: April 25, 2018 at 12:34 PM (#5659945)
There are 8 toss-ups per Cook, with 3 of them held by Republicans(Flake, Heller, Corker). All other seats are at least leaning to the incumbent party. Dems need 7 out of 8 of those toss-ups giving them a 3.1% chance of taking back the Senate. This is obviously really basic level analysis, but while I'm optimistic, I'm not ready to move them out of longshot designation, primarily because I'm not really a believer in Tennessee coming through.
   593. SouthSideRyan Posted: April 25, 2018 at 12:36 PM (#5659949)
Cochran replaced by Hyde-Smith in Mississippi is the other special.
   594. Zonk was SHOCKED by #6! Posted: April 25, 2018 at 12:40 PM (#5659961)
But if being the president's doctor means I can't ever be drunk, I don't even know why I got a doctorate.


Huh.

Oddly enough, I'm guessing I've got a higher comfort level with occasionally tying one on than most -- but were I higher up in government (or an elected official)? I'd definitely putting hard and fast limits on myself... I mean, since my 30s started nearly 15 years ago - the manifestations of that problematic behavior are pretty much limited to fishing a larger than an expected bar tab from pocket, occasionally waking up at 5 AM on my couch with half a dozen messages from a late night pizza delivery guy who got a free pie, or replacing a shirt that lapsing motor skills ruined.

But in office (or a position like Jacksons)? I'd be universally employing hard-and-fast limits that I already place on myself in certain situations, mostly work/professional situations - including conferences, etc... where lord knows, it can be hard to turn down a less-disciplined executive who sloppily throws down the corporate card for an open bar tab, but also things like vacations or trips with a GF's family where it just seems more prudent to be the one who takes the keys rather than needing the keys taken.

I suppose I'm being rather naive - I know DC and politicos tend to be rather famous for their loss of control over such habits, but I've never had a problem sticking with my limits in the ever-increasing 'responsible scenarios'. I guess I'd just be too mortified to ever be caught in a situation like the one alleged about Jackson.
   595. Zonk was SHOCKED by #6! Posted: April 25, 2018 at 12:45 PM (#5659969)
There are 8 toss-ups per Cook, with 3 of them held by Republicans(Flake, Heller, Corker). All other seats are at least leaning to the incumbent party. Dems need 7 out of 8 of those toss-ups giving them a 3.1% chance of taking back the Senate. This is obviously really basic level analysis, but while I'm optimistic, I'm not ready to move them out of longshot designation, primarily because I'm not really a believer in Tennessee coming through.


Where you put the odds/percentage/chances line for the demarcation between "longshot" and underdog, out of curiosity?

In my mind, I guess I put it at 20% or less as longshot, 21%-~40% underdog.

I feel like we're in low 20s territory - with the upper limit (Trump's poll number crash further, yada yada) of ~35%.
   596. This is going to be state of the art wall Posted: April 25, 2018 at 12:48 PM (#5659976)
But in office (or a position like Jacksons)? I'd be universally employing hard-and-fast limits that I already place on myself in certain situations, mostly work/professional situations - including conferences, etc... where lord knows, it can be hard to turn down a less-disciplined executive who sloppily throws down the corporate card for an open bar tab, but also things like vacations or trips with a GF's family where it just seems more prudent to be the one who takes the keys rather than needing the keys taken.


the type of people that are attracted to this sort of job/position/career are exactly the type that think they have complete control over their faculties at all times, including when drunk. they are not lacking confidence. for the most part these are social jobs, not technical ones, or the technical aspect is just a sidenote once you into middle management.

this doc, while I'm sure he's qualified as a doctor, also looks like a guy that can work a room. the drinking and pill handing out probably helps quite bit, at least most of the time.
   597. -- Posted: April 25, 2018 at 12:49 PM (#5659979)
But then Turley gives his game away right there, when he implies that the focus during this entire episode should always be on Comey rather than on Trump.


Why would Trump, or anyone else for that matter, be the "focus" of Comey's likely misconduct?

That makes zero sense. Which means, yeah, it makes perfect sense -- it's a symptom of TDS. Trump as the target of misconduct doesn't make it not misconduct. That's the divide between principled actual liberal civil libertarians, and unprincipled, by-any-means-necessary TDSers. This "let's dispense with everything because Trump" attitude of the TDSers is quite dangerous (*) and as a personal matter, I'm somewhat proud that I've stayed true to high-quality principles that long predate Trump.

(*) And when it's conjoined with abuses of power by institutions like the FBI, even more dangerous.
   598. McCoy Posted: April 25, 2018 at 12:53 PM (#5659987)
I'm still waiting on the permanent solutions that were supposed to come after the temporary Muslim ban. It has been well over a year, you'd think they'd have a solution by now instead of going to court over and over again for a temporary position.
   599. Gonfalon Bubble Posted: April 25, 2018 at 12:58 PM (#5659993)
   600. Zonk was SHOCKED by #6! Posted: April 25, 2018 at 01:07 PM (#5659996)
the type of people that are attracted to this sort of job/position/career are exactly the type that think they have complete control over their faculties at all times, including when drunk. they are not lacking confidence. for the most part these are social jobs, not technical ones, or the technical aspect is just a sidenote once you into middle management.


Not that I disagree with your assessment, but I think that's an awfully stupid way for any person to think. I mean, there are different sorts of drunks - happy drunks, mean drunks, sloppy drunks, risk-taker drunks, etc (I, myself, would be about 30% sloppy/70% happy) - and being no stranger to the phenomenon (we tend to attract our own), I've known plenty... but none of them are that when drunk.

The line between confidence and hubris may be a fine one in many cases, but this just seems like a case where it's pretty stark.
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