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Monday, March 19, 2018

OTP 2018 March 19: Spending bill could quash Minor League Baseball players’ wage claims

A massive government spending bill that Congress is expected to consider this week could include a provision exempting Minor League Baseball players from federal labor laws, according to three congressional officials familiar with the talks.

The exemption would represent the culmination of more than two years of lobbying by Major League Baseball, which has sought to preempt a spate of lawsuits that have been filed by minor leaguers alleging they have been illegally underpaid.

(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: March 19, 2018 at 07:25 AM | 2016 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: minor league pay, minor leagues, off topic, owners, politics

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   1. The usual palaver and twaddle (Met Fan Charlie) Posted: March 19, 2018 at 03:00 PM (#5639870)
Old thread 1652

there are some really ####### dumb white people out there


and they all voted for Trump...
   2. Gonfalon Bubble Posted: March 19, 2018 at 03:22 PM (#5639882)
"But doctor, I am Pagliacci" 2018:

Keyboard Cat has died. But now there is no one to play him off.
   3. The Yankee Clapper Posted: March 19, 2018 at 03:32 PM (#5639887)
From the dying thread (#1714):
My town will be opening two brewpubs within the next twelve months within a quarter mile of each other. At that point we will have four breweries and a cidery operating in a town of 60,000 people.

Somewhat relatedly, there appears to be something of a bipartisan effort to repeal the 184-year old law barring distilleries on Indian land:
Lawmakers have introduced a bipartisan bill designed to roll back a 184-year-old law that prohibits distilleries on Native American land. The bill was introduced by Reps. Jaime Herrera Beutler, R-Wash., and Derek Kilmer, D-Wash., on Thursday and has bipartisan support from Reps. Don Young, R-Alaska, Denny Heck, D-Wash., and Tom Cole, R-Okla.

Native American booze should have a considerable price advantage over the heavily-taxed stuff that dominates the current market. The liquor industry and the states with the highest liquor taxes may have something to say about this legislation.
   4. Mellow Mouse, Benevolent Space Tyrant Posted: March 19, 2018 at 03:33 PM (#5639888)
Former Rep. Charles Djou (R-HI) writes in the Honolulu Civil Beat:

Today, after much consideration, I abandon my party because I am unwilling to abandon my principles. I can no longer stand with a Republican Party that is led by a man I firmly believe is taking the party of Lincoln in a direction I fundamentally disagree with, and a party that is unwilling to stand up to him.

I have long believed that America’s strength lies in our nation’s diversity — not its exclusion or isolation. We are a nation of immigrants and benefit from a national fabric woven with the threads of many people, of many backgrounds and cultures, all united in the common belief and love of American liberty. That’s why I championed immigration reform as a congressman.

It disturbs me that the Republican Party under President Donald Trump is now defined as a party hostile to immigration. We are the leader of the free world, not because we are great (or need to be great again), but because we are good.

   5. Larvell B Posted: March 19, 2018 at 03:37 PM (#5639889)
I have long believed that America’s strength lies in our nation’s diversity — not its exclusion or isolation.


Nah, this is diversity-cult silly. I like diversity, but it's not the sole, or even primary, source of "America's strength."

I don't even agree that a group of four white guys sitting at a bar becomes more "diverse" just because a black friend joins them. Who believes such hoo-hoo?
   6. Mellow Mouse, Benevolent Space Tyrant Posted: March 19, 2018 at 03:40 PM (#5639891)
The GOP has the most advantageous Senate map in a long long time (ever?) and they are feeling VERY confident about keeping their majority, I guess.

Republicans bet their Senate majority on Trump

But Senate Republicans are nevertheless making a counterintuitive, all-in bet that President Donald Trump will save their 51-49 majority — and perhaps even help them pick up a few seats.

Even as fears grow within the GOP that Trump will cost Republicans the House, Senate Republicans say the president will play a starring role in the closely contested campaigns that will decide control of the chamber. Trump will be front and center in every state that helped elect the president, according to GOP senators and strategists, making the case that Democrats are hindering his agenda.

“If you look at a race in a state like Missouri or North Dakota — or any of these states — he’ll be very involved,” said Sen. Cory Gardner of Colorado, chairman of the GOP’s campaign arm, who speaks with Trump about political strategy regularly. “He’ll be actively campaigning for a Senate majority. Absolutely.”


I think they should go with their gut and roll with The Donald. I wonder if Clapper and other GOP stalwarts here agree? I assume they do, but I don't want to put words in their mouths.
   7. Greg K Posted: March 19, 2018 at 03:41 PM (#5639892)
I don't even agree that a group of four white guys sitting at a bar becomes more "diverse" just because a black friend joins them.

Reminds of when I was told to meet two German guys at a bar, and then spent half an hour sitting there not realizing the white guy and Vietnamese guy at the other end of the bar were the Germans.

In that case the diversity of their group screwed me.
   8. BrianBrianson Posted: March 19, 2018 at 03:42 PM (#5639894)
When he's reading, he slurs his words. He sounds overmedicated, almost like he's just had a mild stroke.


I've seen what people claim as evidence of this, and it's not very convincing. More likely, it's just his dentures bouncing around.
   9. Traderdave Posted: March 19, 2018 at 03:42 PM (#5639895)
Native American booze should have a considerable price advantage over the heavily-taxed stuff that dominates the current market. The liquor industry and the states with the highest liquor taxes may have something to say about this legislation.


To be sold off the reservation it would subject to federal and state taxes.
   10. Srul Itza Posted: March 19, 2018 at 03:44 PM (#5639896)
Djou's actions are not uncommon among Republicans who are tired of losing, and would like to hold office, in one of the most extreme one-party states in the nation.

Djou, by the way, was a Congress-critter for less than 8 months. He ran in a special election, because Neil Abercrombie resigned to run for governor. Djou won with 40% of the vote, when the remainder was split between 2 other democrats running.

When he was running against only one Democrat, he lost a relatively close race, 53% to 47%, to the Democrat who came in second in the Special Election.
   11. Commissioner Bud Black Beltre Hillman Posted: March 19, 2018 at 03:45 PM (#5639897)
I'm sorry, did Rep. Djou actually say anything about four white guys at a bar being joined by a black friend, or what constitutes diversity, or... anything to prompt the second part of post 5?
   12. Srul Itza Posted: March 19, 2018 at 03:46 PM (#5639898)
Politics as usual:

Senior executives at Cambridge Analytica – the data company that credits itself with Donald Trump’s presidential victory – have been secretly filmed saying they could entrap politicians in compromising situations with bribes and Ukrainian sex workers.
   13. Gonfalon Bubble Posted: March 19, 2018 at 03:46 PM (#5639899)
The strategic data company Cambridge Analytica, which backed Trump's 2016 election and is funded by Steve Bannon buddy and GOP donor Robert Mercer, is running into a spot of bother after telling British journalists they use bribes, leaks and hooker stings.

[EDIT: So it's double sourced!]
   14. Misirlou doesn't live in the restaurant Posted: March 19, 2018 at 03:47 PM (#5639900)
Nah, this is diversity-cult silly. I like diversity, but it's not the sole, or even primary, source of "America's strength


Diversity in isolation as an end unto itself? No. But immigration HAS been a primary source, and diversity is an inevitable byproduct of that.

And as a side note, I had a wonderful Vietnamese lunch in Gainesville, Fl last Friday, within sight of a Zaxbys, Bojangles, and Popeyes, so that diversity was most definitely a strength unto itself.
   15. Gonfalon Bubble Posted: March 19, 2018 at 03:47 PM (#5639901)
   16. Srul Itza Posted: March 19, 2018 at 03:51 PM (#5639904)
David referring to Putin's brutal political tactics:

If you do those things, you may be artificially popular.


Artificial sweeteners are still sweet.

Artificially popular is still popular.

I have no doubt that the support for Putin is significantly less than his polling.

But to suggest that he has no real, strong support from Russians -- the majority of Russians -- is bull.

If you think that, because Russians are suffering due to the economy being devastated by the drop in oil and gas prices, and by Western sanctions, that means they will turn on Putin, you are ignoring hundreds of years of Russian history. Suffering is what they do best.
   17. BrianBrianson Posted: March 19, 2018 at 03:52 PM (#5639905)
To be sold off the reservation it would subject to federal and state taxes.


Sure, but I've never been to a reserve in Canada that wasn't an orgy of gas stations and tobacconists, for exactly this reason.
   18. Srul Itza Posted: March 19, 2018 at 03:54 PM (#5639906)
[EDIT: So it's double sourced!]



I FINALLY BEAT SOMEONE TO THE PUNCH! Oh Frabjous day, calloon callay!
   19. bunyon Posted: March 19, 2018 at 03:54 PM (#5639907)
have been secretly filmed saying they could entrap politicians in compromising situations with bribes and Ukrainian sex workers.

Hell, I could entrap politicians with bribes and Ukranian sex workers. Doesn't sound hard to do.
   20. Misirlou doesn't live in the restaurant Posted: March 19, 2018 at 03:56 PM (#5639908)
Sure, but I've never been to a reserve in Canada that wasn't an orgy of gas stations and tobacconists, for exactly this reason.


Sure, but they are not going to distribute off the reservation, they won’t affect the market very much. Indian reservations tend to be in sparsely populated areas of the country, and not too many people are going to drive long distances to save a few bucks on whiskey
   21. Traderdave Posted: March 19, 2018 at 03:58 PM (#5639910)
Most people on this board could be swayed by that 1-2 combination.
   22. Larvell B Posted: March 19, 2018 at 03:59 PM (#5639911)
I'm sorry, did Rep. Djou actually say anything about four white guys at a bar being joined by a black friend, or what constitutes diversity, or... anything to prompt the second part of post 5?


No, that's my own example to show how lame his statement, and the knee-jerk summoning up of "diversity," generally, is. Worked pretty well, right?
   23. Larvell B Posted: March 19, 2018 at 04:00 PM (#5639912)
But immigration HAS been a primary source, and diversity is an inevitable byproduct of that.


Right, but he can't say "immigration" -- so he has to dog whistle. Either that, or he's lying.
   24. Misirlou doesn't live in the restaurant Posted: March 19, 2018 at 04:01 PM (#5639914)
Worked pretty well, right?


Hardly
   25. The Yankee Clapper Posted: March 19, 2018 at 04:01 PM (#5639915)
Native American booze should have a considerable price advantage over the heavily-taxed stuff that dominates the current market. The liquor industry and the states with the highest liquor taxes may have something to say about this legislation.

To be sold off the reservation it would subject to federal and state taxes.

Sure, and that makes it highly unlikely that any tribe would attempt to sell outside of Indian land. However, there is a considerable market for untaxed cigarettes sold on Indian land, and booze would seem likely to have much higher demand.
   26. Larvell B Posted: March 19, 2018 at 04:02 PM (#5639916)
Hardly


So a fifth black friend, with essentially the same personality as four white friends, makes the group "diverse"?

That seems ... odd.

And let's tease out the principle even more. Four white guys are sitting at a bar on a Friday night watching sports and having a good time. A fifth friend, black, joins them. That's now an "improved" group? Or a "stronger" group? How so?
   27. Misirlou doesn't live in the restaurant Posted: March 19, 2018 at 04:04 PM (#5639917)
Sure, and that makes it highly unlikely that any tribe would attempt to sell outside of Indian land. However, there is a considerable market for untaxed cigarettes sold on Indian land, and booze would seem likely to have much higher demand.


Do they manufacture the cigarettes themselves?
   28. The Yankee Clapper Posted: March 19, 2018 at 04:06 PM (#5639918)
Sure, but they are not going to distribute off the reservation, they won’t affect the market very much. Indian reservations tend to be in sparsely populated areas of the country, and not too many people are going to drive long distances to save a few bucks on whiskey

That's not really true of the casino tribes in the East, and the impetus for the legislation seems to be from Washington state. It's not likely to put current liquor companies out of business, but they'd probably notice the competition.
   29. philphan Posted: March 19, 2018 at 04:06 PM (#5639919)
Interesting article just published by the Grey Lady, but I am not sure whether it should be linked here, or posted as a separate article, since it combines politics and baseball:

A Curveball From the New Tax Law: It Makes Baseball Trades Harder

WASHINGTON — As President Trump congratulated the Houston Astros for winning the World Series at a White House ceremony last week, he also heaped praise on himself and congressional Republicans for passing a sweeping tax cut last year. He hailed Representative Kevin Brady of Texas, the House’s chief tax writer and an Astros superfan, as “the king of those tax cuts.”

What he did not mention is that the new tax law Mr. Brady helped draft, and which Mr. Trump signed, levies a large new tax on the Astros, and similar franchises across professional sports.

The law changed a corner of the tax code that mostly applies to farmers, manufacturers and other businesses that until recently could swap certain assets like trucks and machinery tax-free. But by adding a single word to the newly written tax code — “real” — the law now only allows real estate swaps to qualify for that special treatment.

That change is meant to capture more federal revenue, in order to partially offset reductions in business and personal income tax rates... [But] It also means that the Astros and other sports franchises could now face capital gains taxes every time they exchange or trade their highly paid players.


Complications include how to place a "fair market value" [note--not meant to be scare quotes, or even ironic quotes, ironically] on players when they are traded and how aggressively the IRS will police this change. The change in the tax code appears to affect a 1967 IRS ruling permitting depreciation of player value and stating that “trades of player contracts owned by major league baseball clubs will be considered exchanges of like-kind property”.

It appears to affect all sports leagues, of course, but who the heck cares about any of the other ones?
   30. Zonk, Genius of the Stables Posted: March 19, 2018 at 04:12 PM (#5639920)
The signature tax law of the GOP is turning into a real debacle all the way around...

Nobody would have a guessed a large tax bill, rushed through in secret, hidden from any analysts, marked up in pen in the margins, over the holidays would have so many problems though... so it's not the GOP's fault... as they'll tell you.
   31. bunyon Posted: March 19, 2018 at 04:13 PM (#5639921)
Most people on this board could be swayed by that 1-2 combination.

Hmm. Are you referring to bribes and Ukranian sex workers or driving long distances for cheap booze?


Ah, well, doesn't matter. You're right.
   32. Misirlou doesn't live in the restaurant Posted: March 19, 2018 at 04:13 PM (#5639922)
Four white guys are sitting at a bar on a Friday night having a good time. A fifth friend, black, joins them. That's now an "improved" group? How so?


That you would make up a totally irrelevant and completely off point hypothetical in order 5p mock something that someone did not say is the least surprising thing I have read today. A far more relevant hypothetical is 4 white guys going out to dinner, and all the restaurants serve is beef and potatoes, because the only immigrants this country took in were from the British Isles. Due to the diversity that comes from immigration, they can choose from an almost limitless selection of styles and cuisines. Is THEIR evening enhanced by diversity (the real kind, not the made up kind which exists only in your head)?
   33. Lassus Posted: March 19, 2018 at 04:14 PM (#5639923)
I like diversity, but it's not the sole, or even primary, source of "America's strength."

OK. What is?
   34. Hot Wheeling American in his sleazy salon Posted: March 19, 2018 at 04:16 PM (#5639925)
   35. Zonk, Genius of the Stables Posted: March 19, 2018 at 04:18 PM (#5639926)
OK. What is?


Lots of crumbling bridges for trolls to live under.
   36. zenbitz Posted: March 19, 2018 at 04:19 PM (#5639927)
Trump proposing "a really large scale rollout" of "very, very bad" commercials to dissuade young people from using drugs.


No doubt starring the big DT himself.
"This is your country:" (Obama)
"This is your country on drugs:" (Trump)
"Any questions?

(And yes, I am aware that Donald doesn't drink... not sure about other drugs)
   37. bunyon Posted: March 19, 2018 at 04:20 PM (#5639928)
Blood of babies is a type of drug.
   38. Larvell B Posted: March 19, 2018 at 04:20 PM (#5639929)
OK. What is?


White people. What else? No, sorry -- white males, what else?

But all kidding aside, it's a challenging question about which much can be written. I'd say the constitution and the dedication thereto amongst the citizenry is one, and the generally democratic temperament of the citizenry is another. Another would be the spirit of compromise within the citizenry -- which unfortunately is abating. Our generally professional and non-corrupt civil service is another, as is our generally independent judiciary. The general spirit of freedom within much of the citizenry is another. The spirit of coming to decisions through meetings and consensus.

I'm sure there are things in a similar vein I've left out. Tradition of peaceful transition of power (which the TDS brigade has unfortunately started to erode). Civilian control of the armed forces.

All these things are far, far more important than such superficial things as "race" or "national origin." Orders of magnitude. Our "diversity" would be a nightmare if it was ported into a polity that didn't have the things I listed.

   39. zenbitz Posted: March 19, 2018 at 04:20 PM (#5639930)
Diversity is often a strength. It's not when you are trying to build an army (literal or metaphorical) of jarheads who will follow orders without question.
   40. Greg K Posted: March 19, 2018 at 04:25 PM (#5639933)

And let's tease out the principle even more. Four white guys are sitting at a bar on a Friday night watching sports and having a good time. A fifth friend, black, joins them. That's now an "improved" group? Or a "stronger" group? How so?

Speaking selfishly, I enjoyed having a diverse group of friends in high school because it meant I got to eat home cooked East African, Indian, Trinidadian, or Chinese food fairly often.

More research is needed to confirm that such diversity is the reason I'm superior to all of you, but it's a possibility!
   41. Larvell B Posted: March 19, 2018 at 04:27 PM (#5639934)
Speaking selfishly, I enjoyed having a diverse group of friends in high school because it meant I got to eat home cooked East African, Indian, Trinidadian, or Chinese food fairly often.


They're hanging out at Buffalo Wild Wings. Diverse sauces to be sure, but no more.
   42. PepTech, Bane of Epistemological Foundations Posted: March 19, 2018 at 04:29 PM (#5639935)
The CDC alerted the public today they have isolated a previously unknown malady, currently dubbed Lilla-Trump Disease, or LTD. Researchers drew a connection between the unlikely pair when they identified that a full-throated embrace of the teachings and stylings of the former invariably leads to specific mannerisms employed by the latter – namely, a form of dementia manifested by an extreme disregard for facts and an overriding tendency to warp reality to rationalize any fool thing that they say. There is no known cure. Efforts at containment have been most successful when taking a page from the world of Harry Potter and the notorious boggart; point at the afflicted, firmly picture just how silly it is, and say “Riddikulus”.

The medical world was first alerted to LTD when sufferers complained of a bruised uvula, along with peculiar orange-tinged petechiae. Recent activities were then investigated to identify correlations in lifestyle and social interactions. Experts are split on whether LTD constitutes a new strain of Turley-Dershowitz Syndrome, due to the striking similarities in symptoms and treatment methodology, or whether both afflictions are merely modern manifestations of the age-old Maledictus Simia Contorquere.
   43. PreservedFish Posted: March 19, 2018 at 04:54 PM (#5639947)
I seem to remember SBB arguing that MLB was more boring now than before because of the paucity of black players.
   44. Misirlou doesn't live in the restaurant Posted: March 19, 2018 at 04:58 PM (#5639952)
SBB has no idea what diversity is and what it implies, thus his cartoonish 4 white guys are joined by a black man straw man caricature.
   45. Gonfalon Bubble Posted: March 19, 2018 at 05:00 PM (#5639953)
What if it's four white guys and a white Hispanic?
   46. Gonfalon Bubble Posted: March 19, 2018 at 05:01 PM (#5639955)
NY Times:
President Trump hired the longtime Washington lawyer Joseph E. diGenova on Monday, adding an aggressive voice to his legal team who has pushed the theory on television that the F.B.I. and Justice Department framed Mr. Trump.

...Mr. diGenova has endorsed the notion that a secretive group of F.B.I. agents concocted the Russia investigation as a way to keep Mr. Trump from becoming president. “There was a brazen plot to illegally exonerate Hillary Clinton and, if she didn’t win the election, to then frame Donald Trump with a falsely created crime,” he said on Fox News in January. He added, “Make no mistake about it: A group of F.B.I. and D.O.J. people were trying to frame Donald Trump of a falsely created crime.”

Little evidence has emerged to support that theory.
   47. Gonfalon Bubble Posted: March 19, 2018 at 05:08 PM (#5639961)
Nixon's the One:
The former "Sex and the City" actress and Emmy-Tony-Grammy winner Cynthia Nixon has declared that she will challenge NY's Governor Andrew Cuomo for the Democratic nomination.

Now voters will decide whether they're a Miranda or an Andrew.
   48. BDC Posted: March 19, 2018 at 05:10 PM (#5639963)
Four white guys are sitting at a bar on a Friday night watching sports and having a good time. A fifth friend, black, joins them. That's now an "improved" group? Or a "stronger" group? How so?

Well, the new group is far more likely to be cast in a beer commercial.
   49. Ben Broussard Ramjet Posted: March 19, 2018 at 05:11 PM (#5639966)
The strategic data company Cambridge Analytica, which backed Trump's 2016 election and is funded by Steve Bannon buddy and GOP donor Robert Mercer, is running into a spot of bother after telling British journalists they use bribes, leaks and hooker stings.


Additionally, CA both did and did not do work for a campaign in support of Brexit (Leave.EU). Depending on which tweet from the chair of Leave.EU you read. Reportedly, their work would have been to source foreign donations to the campaign, which would have been illegal under UK law.

The UK Information Commissioner reportedly was seeking a warrant for tomorrow for CA's offices. Tonight, there are Facebook representatives already in those offices, and there's been some Twitter suggestion that the seeking of warrant should be accelerated. (I have no idea of the legal intricacies involved, obviously.)
   50. Commissioner Bud Black Beltre Hillman Posted: March 19, 2018 at 05:14 PM (#5639968)
No, that's my own example to show how lame his statement, and the knee-jerk summoning up of "diversity," generally, is. Worked pretty well, right?

The question of what constitutes diversity ≠ whether diversity is America's strength. Both do include the word "diversity" which tends to set you off (even though you "like" it), so the confusion is understandable.
   51. ERROR---Jolly Old St. Nick Posted: March 19, 2018 at 05:33 PM (#5639977)
Walkout students get suspended by their school, continue to thwart school administrators.

From that link:
After a Pennsylvania school issued detentions to students who walked out of school for #NeverAgain protest. 46 of #Pennridge225 served the first detention today wearing Parkland victim names& sat arms linked for the whole detention

   52. PepTech, Bane of Epistemological Foundations Posted: March 19, 2018 at 05:35 PM (#5639978)
I seem to remember SBB arguing that MLB was more boring now than before because of the paucity of black players.
Black catchers would diversify the hell out of throwing lanes. Particularly if they were left handed. They probably couldn't understand Infinite Jest, though.
   53. Gonfalon Bubble Posted: March 19, 2018 at 05:38 PM (#5639981)
Retiring Rep. Trey Gowdy is another "Ees not my job, man" Republican trying on a child-sized spine as he heads out the door:
Look, I’m disappointed that Steven Bannon would sit there and be interviewed by a salacious book author, but he wouldn’t answer our questions. I’m frustrated by that.

...Executive branch investigations have more credibility, they have more tools, and that's what I think my fellow citizens ought to be waiting for and have confidence in. Not congressional investigations that are run by guys running for the Senate in California who has never met a camera that they didn't fall in love with. That's what you should not have confidence in.

Have confidence in the executive branch investigations. And if Mueller finds stuff, more power to him, but the best I can do is interview the people in front of me and ask all relevant questions, and no one has said there was collusion.

And on that subject...

Republican strategist Rick Tyler:
Here's what's going to happen, I'm going to go out on a limb. The president has calculated now, and I think it's true-- the reaction from the Republicans. He is going to fire Robert Mueller. And you know what's going to happen? Nothing. That's what's going to happen. There will be no response from Republican leadership, from the Congress.

He is now going about -- the reason to fire McCabe, the reason he had to deny him his tenure, his retirement, is he has to discredit him. And he has to systematically discredit everybody who's involved in this Russia investigation. And he has now seen that he can do these things without any recourse. The Congress is not going to reign him in.

We got a single-line sentence from the Speaker of the House. We got nothing from the leadership, practically, in the Senate. We got a little bit from Lindsey Graham, but it's weak soup.

...He's going to fire Mueller eventually. Probably sooner rather than later, before he can get any further... on money laundering or other tangential issues.
   54. Larvell B Posted: March 19, 2018 at 05:50 PM (#5639988)
The question of what constitutes diversity ≠ whether diversity is America's strength.


It's impossible to know whether it's America's strength if we don't know what constitutes it.
   55. John Northey Posted: March 19, 2018 at 06:00 PM (#5639991)
How insane - removing labor law from a group due to lobbying. Disgusting. Either you have labor laws or you don't. Time for the USA to grow up and stop acting like a 3rd world nation. I thought you were starting to grow up but then things went to hell in a handbasket and now you are about to see insane deficits, labor and environmental laws are already destroyed, your nation is a pariah on nearly every issue. Oh but you are 'great again'. Sigh.
   56. Gonfalon Bubble Posted: March 19, 2018 at 07:03 PM (#5639994)
The Mike Pence family's just-released children's book about "Marlon Bundo," a rabbit who hopped into the home and hearts of the Pences, debuted at #11 on Amazon.

The John Oliver show's simultaneous parody of Pence's book, in which the Pence bunny is homosexual and falls in love with another boy bunny, debuted at #1.
   57. Misirlou doesn't live in the restaurant Posted: March 19, 2018 at 07:03 PM (#5639995)
It's impossible to know whether it's America's strength if we don't know what constitutes it.


Well, it’s certainly not as simplistic as 4 white guys in a bar being joined by a black guy
   58. Misirlou doesn't live in the restaurant Posted: March 19, 2018 at 07:06 PM (#5639996)
How insane - removing labor law from a group due to lobbying. Disgusting. Either you have labor laws or you don't. Time for the USA to grow up and stop acting like a 3rd world nation. I thought you were starting to grow up but then things went to hell in a handbasket and now you are about to see insane deficits, labor and environmental laws are already destroyed, your nation is a pariah on nearly every issue. Oh but you are 'great again'. Sigh.


Few, if any Presidents have done more to make America shitty again than Trump. Trump is Joe Peschi in Goodfellas, the least likable player in a movie in which every single character is unlikable

Edit: and sadly enough, Trump would probably take that as a compliment. I mean, Peschi killed people who were merely disrespectful to him. Trump could definitely grok that.
   59. Larvell B Posted: March 19, 2018 at 07:21 PM (#5639997)
Well, it’s certainly not as simplistic as 4 white guys in a bar being joined by a black guy


So the answer to the hypo is "No?"
   60. Gonfalon Bubble Posted: March 19, 2018 at 07:23 PM (#5639998)
What if someone was really bad at hypotheticals?
   61. The Yankee Clapper Posted: March 19, 2018 at 07:43 PM (#5640000)
Cynthia Nixon has declared that she will challenge NY's Governor Andrew Cuomo for the Democratic nomination.

Tanned, rested, and ready? Surprised that there wasn't an ambitious Democratic elected official willing to take on Cuomo. Folks seem to readily express their profound disdain for Cuomo, but still vote for him.
   62. Misirlou doesn't live in the restaurant Posted: March 19, 2018 at 07:47 PM (#5640001)
Folks seem to readily express their profound disdain for Cuomo, but still vote for him.


Sounds familiar.
   63. Gonfalon Bubble Posted: March 19, 2018 at 07:50 PM (#5640003)
Annnnnnd...... scene.
The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday denied the Republican effort to block a new Pennsylvania district map drawn by the state’s top court.

“The application for stay presented to Justice Alito and by him referred to the court is denied,” read the brief order from the nation’s highest court.
   64. Zonk, Genius of the Stables Posted: March 19, 2018 at 07:56 PM (#5640004)
Tanned, rested, and ready? Surprised that there wasn't an ambitious Democratic elected official willing to take on Cuomo. Folks seem to readily express their profound disdain for Cuomo, but still vote for him.


Why? He's still 10 points above water approval wise and he'll probably win any primary by 20 points and a GE by at least 10.

A quixotic primary challenge isn't exactly a great career move for an ambitious Democrat... for all his problems, this isn't Donald Trump we're talking about.
   65. Commissioner Bud Black Beltre Hillman Posted: March 19, 2018 at 07:56 PM (#5640005)
It's impossible to know whether it's America's strength if we don't know what constitutes it.
And as others have noted, an irrelevant hypothetical doesn't bring us any closer to addressing either question.

I'm assuming it was just a combo-bag of trollery ("hmmm, dunno if I'll get a response just by calling out diversity as a concept, I'd better throw in something half-based about race") but if there was some actual logic underlying the post, feel free to restate.
   66. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: March 19, 2018 at 08:13 PM (#5640007)

How insane - removing labor law from a group due to lobbying. Disgusting. Either you have labor laws or you don't. Time for the USA to grow up and stop acting like a 3rd world nation. I thought you
What does this refer to?
   67. Misirlou doesn't live in the restaurant Posted: March 19, 2018 at 08:16 PM (#5640009)
What does this refer to?


The headline story
   68. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: March 19, 2018 at 08:17 PM (#5640010)
The headline story
Oh. Who reads those?

Thanks.
   69. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: March 19, 2018 at 08:34 PM (#5640014)

Okay, so the headline of the headline story is misleading, and parts of it are badly written. The law would not "exempt[] Minor League Baseball players from federal labor laws." It would exempt them from a single law, the FLSA. But minor league baseball players are already exempt, as numerous courts have ruled. This proposed law would simply make that explicit to eliminate any uncertainty.

The rant about the headline story is a bit bizarre. The wage and hour laws (like other federal laws) were not handed down at Sinai. They were passed by politicians, altered over time to include or exclude various jobs or industries. Even if minor league players weren't already exempt, there's nothing about them that ought to make them immune from the political process. And team owners are no more or less entitled to lobby for their interests than players or any other group.
   70. The Yankee Clapper Posted: March 19, 2018 at 08:44 PM (#5640016)
How insane - removing labor law from a group due to lobbying. Disgusting. Either you have labor laws or you don't. Time for the USA to grow up and stop acting like a 3rd world nation. I thought you were starting to grow up but then things went to hell in a handbasket and now you are about to see insane deficits, labor and environmental laws are already destroyed, your nation is a pariah on nearly every issue. Oh but you are 'great again'. Sigh.

In all fairness, that's quite an overreaction. No one had ever interpreted the Fair Labor Standards Act overtime or minimum wage provisions to apply to minor league baseball players. Neither the industry nor its employees operated as if they were covered. However, it's become a bit of an issue recently, and Congress may act to codify the long existing current practice. Some may prefer that they don't do so, but it's hardly a case of taking anything away from workers, or an indication that we're headed toward "third world" status.

EDIT: A FLSA compliant beverage to #69.
   71. Gonfalon Bubble Posted: March 19, 2018 at 08:50 PM (#5640018)
Clapper on the newest and greatest Nixon campaign, #61:
Surprised that there wasn't an ambitious Democratic elected official willing to take on Cuomo. Folks seem to readily express their profound disdain for Cuomo, but still vote for him.


An of-the-moment Siena poll has Andrew Cuomo leading Cynthia Nixon by 66% to 19%, and either of the GOP hopefuls by 57% to 28%. Just imagine if Cuomo were likable.

Schumer's last GOP opponent got 27%. Gillenbrand's last GOP opponent got less than 25%. Cuomo's last GOP opponent got over 40%. So there's his penalty?

From Rudy Giuliani to Al D'Amato to Eliot Spitzer to Hillary Clinton, it hasn't been unknown for New York voters to elect grouchy, phony a-holes.
   72. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: March 19, 2018 at 09:01 PM (#5640019)
The rant about the headline story is a bit bizarre. The wage and hour laws (like other federal laws) were not handed down at Sinai


Well that’s all laws. I mean, not the laws of physics or anything, the ones lawyers fetishize. They’re all wholly imaginary constructs based on societal whims, subject to change at any time for any reason. State, federal, the laws of the National Wrestling Alliance, whatever.
   73. Srul Itza Posted: March 19, 2018 at 09:15 PM (#5640022)
So, are Ukrainian Sex Workers the new market inefficiency?
   74. Ray (CTL) Posted: March 19, 2018 at 10:22 PM (#5640029)
I like diversity, but it's not the sole, or even primary, source of "America's strength."

OK. What is?


Our Constitution and our ~capitalism, in that order.
   75. Ray (CTL) Posted: March 19, 2018 at 10:28 PM (#5640031)
Nixon's the One:

The former "Sex and the City" actress and Emmy-Tony-Grammy winner Cynthia Nixon has declared that she will challenge NY's Governor Andrew Cuomo for the Democratic nomination.

Now voters will decide whether they're a Miranda or an Andrew.


Dershowitz has a major problem with her:

Alan Dershowitz
Verified account
@AlanDersh 10h10 hours ago

The tweets in response to my Cynthia Nixon tweet prove my point. If you’re anti-Israel, Nixon’s your candidate.


Alan Dershowitz
Verified account
@AlanDersh Mar 16

Cynthia Nixon may run for Gov of NY. She has collaborated with Israel haters Jewish Voice for Peace and Vanessa Redgrave in boycotting Israel. Do not support her bigotry.
   76. BDC Posted: March 19, 2018 at 10:36 PM (#5640032)
If diversity made America strong, our national motto would be “e pluribus unum” or something foreign like that.
   77. ERROR---Jolly Old St. Nick Posted: March 19, 2018 at 10:37 PM (#5640033)
I wouldn't vote for either a Nixon or a Cuomo unless Cuomo's father came back to life, but has Alan Dershowitz ever influenced a single vote anywhere?
   78. Zonk, Genius of the Stables Posted: March 19, 2018 at 10:56 PM (#5640035)
I tend to think people who defend Trump have irrevocably impaired judgment and as such, have difficulty putting much stock into their opinions on other actors seeking office.

I suppose that's the problem with Trump - he hasn't lowered the bar, he's obliterated it. If he's fit for office, then fitness no longer really matters any more, does it?
   79. Zonk, Genius of the Stables Posted: March 19, 2018 at 11:02 PM (#5640038)
That said, I suppose that a leftist actress most famous for starring in every single woman's favorite TV show winning the governor's mansion would drive certain people crazy.

Still, not being a Trumpkin, I think that's a really poor qualification for office.
   80. Chicago Joe Posted: March 19, 2018 at 11:05 PM (#5640040)
What if it's four white guys and a white Hispanic?


The white Hispanic probably followed them there.
   81. This is going to be state of the art wall Posted: March 19, 2018 at 11:13 PM (#5640041)
Still, not being a Trumpkin, I think that's a really poor qualification for office.


Nixon was being courted by the Working Families Party when I was still there, this is back in early 2011. She's been a "serious" (YMMV) activist since around that time and like anyone that WFP associates with she's got the natural charisma and "dog with a bone" mentality to win a big race. WFP can pick'em, and they have a long beef with Cuomo. That said, I don't think she has a realistic chance to win. She can certainly send a message though with a well executed challenge and inject some more progressive friendly positions into the NYS discourse.

If you like your POLS as "messengers" and "vehicles" than she's good at that. But still, an uphill battle.

Here's a pretty good background article.

tl:dr: a lot of Dems in NYS loathe Cuomo, including the Working Families Party wing.
   82. ERROR---Jolly Old St. Nick Posted: March 19, 2018 at 11:25 PM (#5640044)
I suppose that's the problem with Trump - he hasn't lowered the bar, he's obliterated it. If he's fit for office, then fitness no longer really matters any more, does it?

He's roughly as fit for office as his pal Putin. There's scarcely a trait they don't share, with the only real difference being the (so far) greater constraints on our would-be Tsar.

Only partly off topic, is there a single one of the Seven Deadly Sins** that Trump isn't guilty of? Has any other president from FDR on been guilty of more than maybe 2 or 3?

(EDIT: Well, Clinton may have had 5, all but envy and sloth)

** Pride, greed, lust, envy, gluttony, wrath and sloth
   83. Tulo's Fishy Mullet (mrams) Posted: March 19, 2018 at 11:36 PM (#5640047)
I tend to think people who defend Trump have irrevocably impaired judgment and as such, have difficulty putting much stock into their opinions on other actors seeking office.


Are there permissible degrees at which a person may defend not Trump per se, but may be defenders of actions, inactions, etc. and not suffer from irrevocably impaired judgment?
I didn't vote for him, don't belong to any of the Teams, but find him to be a total mixed bag. The contents of the bag of course run the gamut, from disgraceful, repulsive, and moronic, to cunning, shrewd and otherwise a useful idiot for certain matters I'm interested in (but perhaps not in the way that most view him as such).
   84. Zonk, Genius of the Stables Posted: March 19, 2018 at 11:41 PM (#5640049)
If you like your POLS as "messengers" and "vehicles" than she's good at that. But still, an uphill battle.


Meh, I do not... or at least, I prefer the "message" just be along for the ride, not THE ride.

Beyond that, though - I think messages are also especially bad in executive roles. Sometimes they can make good legislators, or at least, passable legislators - but the role of Presidents and Governors just isn't well-suited to that sort IMO.
   85. Jay Z Posted: March 19, 2018 at 11:51 PM (#5640051)
He's roughly as fit for office as his pal Putin. There's scarcely a trait they don't share, with the only real difference being the (so far) greater constraints on our would-be Tsar.


Pal? Trump is Putin's today. Trump couldn't carry Putin's jockstrap and he knows it. How embarrassing for this country for the GOP president to actually today up to an authoritarian state. Embarrassing and disgusting.

Y'know who would have made a better president that Trump? George Steinbrenner. How far we have fallen.
   86. Ray (CTL) Posted: March 20, 2018 at 12:01 AM (#5640053)
I tend to think people who defend Trump have irrevocably impaired judgment and as such, have difficulty putting much stock into their opinions on other actors seeking office.


If you think Dershowitz is a Trump defender you're very confused.

The folks whose calculus comes down to opposing everything Trump related no matter what principle is at stake are the dangerous ones. Criminalizing politics really ought not to be a road that is traveled.

I suppose that's the problem with Trump - he hasn't lowered the bar, he's obliterated it. If he's fit for office, then fitness no longer really matters any more, does it?


Not in the way fitness was previously perceived, no.

Trump has forever altered the perception of the presidency, but also of the Republican party, the Democratic party, the FBI, the FISA warrant process, Hillary Clinton...

The Mueller investigation has hooked some fish like Manafort, Gates, and Flynn, but they're not history altering. Nor are they related to the central reason for the Mueller and the various Russia-related investigations. What has been history altering is to see what the various Russia-related investigations have uncovered with respect to the FBI (Comey, McCabe, Strzok, Page) and the FISA warrant process. Some key players have seen their reputations take a major hit. Comey damaged his reputation forever when he became a leaker, and through his various border-crossing tweets. McCabe should have recused himself from the job given the appearance of a conflict w/r/t his wife's campaign; now his own leaking has led to the destruction of his career. The damage the Strzok and Page texts have done to themselves and more importantly to the integrity of the FBI speaks for itself. And now John Brennan has delivered an unbridled tweet.

Institutions like the FBI had become unchecked sources of power but thankfully that may be changing. Trump has smashed through presidential norms and maybe it's for the best. One has no obligation to sit there and take it when townfolk carrying pitch forks are charging up the hill. Including the president. If the people who are attacking him -- in government and out; in the media and out; on Facebook and BBTF and out -- show no respect for the office, there's little reason he should.
   87. Zonk, Genius of the Stables Posted: March 20, 2018 at 12:04 AM (#5640054)
Are there permissible degrees at which a person may defend not Trump per se, but may be defenders of actions, inactions, etc. and not suffer from irrevocably impaired judgment?
I didn't vote for him, don't belong to any of the Teams, but find him to be a total mixed bag. The contents of the bag of course run the gamut, from disgraceful, repulsive, and moronic, to cunning, shrewd and otherwise a useful idiot for certain matters I'm interested in (but perhaps not in the way that most view him as such).


I haven't seen any cunning or shrewd, maybe some useful idiot here and there.

A lot of actions/inactions are binary, so sure - it's impossible for someone to land on the wrong one every time... but the disgraceful, repulsive, and moronic does real and lasting damage.

I think one thing Trump has proven is that the US and its institutions are resilient, but that's not written in stone nor permanent and I think Trump has done a lot of damage to them that won't just magically heal when he's gotten rid off.

I mean - take Cynthia Nixon... I'll admit, I'm not entirely familiar with her politics - that's why bars matter... She can't be any worse than Trump; at worst - she'll infuriate a wholly different set of people. THat's not way to run a government.
   88. Zonk, Genius of the Stables Posted: March 20, 2018 at 12:10 AM (#5640056)
Trump has forever altered the perception of the presidency, but also of the Republican party, the Democratic party, the FBI, the FISA warrant process, Hillary Clinton...


No, the Democratic party shares none of his stink.

Frankly, institutions like the FBI had become unchecked sources of power but thankfully that may be changing. Trump has smashed through presidential norms and maybe it's for the best. One has no obligation to sit there and take it when townfolk carrying pitch forks are charging up the hill. Including the president. If the people who are attacking him -- in government and out; in the media and out; on Facebook and BBTF and out -- show no respect for the office, there's little reason he should.


Spare me.

Let's just pretend for a moment that not just the FBI - he's also attacked the courts, diplomats, the entire DOJ, etc - are these "Deep State centers of unchecked power".... What we CAN'T pretend - because he's made it clear over and over and over again - is that Trump wanted them to become any sort of newly pure bunch of edifices with only the purest of motives. He doesn't want them "pure" - he wants them to pledge loyalty to him.

So these things get torn down and what... you think the guy doing the tearing down and rebuilding is going to make them better? Come on. Nobody's that dumb.
   89. Ray (CTL) Posted: March 20, 2018 at 12:12 AM (#5640057)
I think one thing Trump has proven is that the US and its institutions are resilient, but that's not written in stone nor permanent and I think Trump has done a lot of damage to them that won't just magically heal when he's gotten rid off.


Trump didn't sleep with Lisa Page or with Peter Strzok. He didn't send their texts that revealed their mindset. Trump didn't force Comey and McCabe to become leakers. Trump didn't abuse the FISA warrant process. Trump didn't force John Brennan to lose his hinges.

Trump didn't do any damage to these institutions; the people in them did that.

And these institutions had become all powerful and in practice unchecked. Folks here like to say that Trump is an authoritarian. Yet these same people don't seem concerned that the real authoritarians have inhabited the FBI and the CIA and the DOJ. Trump is constrained by the Constitution and is checked by the other branches of government. The FBI and CIA, for all practical purposes, are not. That's changing, and that's a good thing, and Trump is responsible for it.
   90. Zonk, Genius of the Stables Posted: March 20, 2018 at 12:14 AM (#5640059)
Trump didn't sleep with Lisa Page or with Peter Strzok. He didn't send their texts that revealed their mindset. Trump didn't force Comey and McCabe to become leakers. Trump didn't abuse the FISA warrant process. Trump didn't force John Brennan to lose his hinges.

Trump didn't do any damage to these institutions; the people in them did that..

And these institutions had become all powerful and unchecked. Folks here like to say that Trump is an authoritarian. Yet these same people don't seem concerned that the real authoritarians have inhabited the FBI and the CIA and the DOJ. Trump is constrained by the Constitution and is checked by the other branches of government.
The FBI and CIA, for all practical purposes, are not. That's changing, and that's a good thing, and Trump is responsible for it.


It's a pointless discussion with you because you completely ignore anything Trump has done or said in discussions, choosing instead to obsess over people you never heard of until certain people told you a good little Trumpkin is supposed to obsess over.

   91. Ray (CTL) Posted: March 20, 2018 at 12:15 AM (#5640060)
Trump has forever altered the perception of the presidency, but also of the Republican party, the Democratic party, the FBI, the FISA warrant process, Hillary Clinton...

No, the Democratic party shares none of his stink.


They share every bit of his stink. They couldn't nominate a candidate who would beat him. They couldn't find a message that would lead to his defeat. That's a stunning set of affairs. They're responsible for him being president more than any other group is, because they had the chance to stop it and they proved unbelievably inept at doing that, frolicing and detouring around with pet issues that didn't resonate with anyone but themselves. They have done incredible damage to their reputation and credibility as a party. And it's not clear that they've learned anything from it.
   92. Zonk, Genius of the Stables Posted: March 20, 2018 at 12:16 AM (#5640061)
They share every bit of his stink. They couldn't nominate a candidate who would beat him.


Yeah, it's everybody's fault but the guy and the people who supported him.

   93. Zonk, Genius of the Stables Posted: March 20, 2018 at 12:20 AM (#5640062)
They have done incredible damage to their reputation and credibility as a party. And it's not clear that they've learned anything from it.


I can point to some elections and a wide variety of polls that would say otherwise. And come November, I'm point you to a whole lot more.
   94. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: March 20, 2018 at 12:22 AM (#5640063)
And these institutions had become all powerful and in practice unchecked. Folks here like to say that Trump is an authoritarian. Yet these same people don't seem concerned that the real authoritarians have inhabited the FBI and the CIA and the DOJ.


“No authoritarian, no authoritarian. You authoritarian.”

If there’s one thing your bald-headed, spay-tanned, sackless blubberpot of a hero has done to benefit the country as a whole, it’s to help identify the most amoral and dishonest stooges in our midst.
   95. Ray (CTL) Posted: March 20, 2018 at 12:29 AM (#5640064)
I can point to some elections and a wide variety of polls that would say otherwise. And come November, I'm point you to a whole lot more.


Trump won the only poll there is: the 2016 Electoral College.

I expect the Democrats to do well in the midterms. That will tell us precisely nothing about Trump, because it's what often happens.

What will tell us precisely everything about Trump -- and about the to-this-point-laughable state of the Democratic Party -- is the 2020 presidential election.
   96. Zonk, Genius of the Stables Posted: March 20, 2018 at 12:30 AM (#5640065)
I guess we'll find out.

Your tears, Ray, are among the ones I'm most looking forward to drinking in 2019.
   97. Gonfalon Bubble Posted: March 20, 2018 at 12:40 AM (#5640067)
Ray, #86:
The folks whose calculus comes down to opposing everything Trump related no matter what principle is at stake are the dangerous ones. Criminalizing politics really ought not to be a road that is traveled.


Stuff like this reads much better if you also imagine you're hearing the violent "gwak! gwak! gwak!" fellatio sound effects they sometimes play on the Howard Stern show.
   98. Ray (CTL) Posted: March 20, 2018 at 12:42 AM (#5640069)
I don't think you folks will be up to the task in 2020. On the periphery you're still frittering around with the same pet issues you had before -- issues that nobody cares about other than yourselves and those who will never vote with you. In the main you still don't have a message that resonates with anyone but yourselves; Trump Is Terrible sounds great to you -- I see you folks have largely abandoned the Hitler talk, now that he became president and even you can see he wasn't Hitler -- but it's not going to win the day any more than it did in 2016.

But there's one one added time bomb for 2020 that wasn't present in 2016: you're likely to implode over the illegal immigration issue.
   99. Gonfalon Bubble Posted: March 20, 2018 at 01:57 AM (#5640070)
Andrew Cuomo on the chilling threat of Cynthia Nixon: "Normally, name recognition is relevant when it has some connection to the endeavor. If it’s just about name recognition, then I’m hoping Brad Pitt, Angelina Jolie and Billy Joel don’t get into the race.”

Andrew Cuomo objects to getting a leg up in New York politics based on name recognition.
   100. Stevey Posted: March 20, 2018 at 02:48 AM (#5640071)
Ray: its bad to criminalize politics, and you can’t win on just saying mean things about the guy in charge...


Unless it involves Obama.

Ray’s selective memory is something to behold. Sometimes I think he even believes himself. The GOP spent eight years being little more than the anti-Obama party, and then nominated the most anti-Obama person they could.

but it's not going to win the day any more than it did in 2016.


I like how Ray couldn’t be more convinced that Trump sneaking in the back door through the intricacies of the Electoral College by 77K votes is some kind of impeachable referendum and that no one who voted for Trump has turned on him because Ray doesn’t want to pay attention to elections that happen between presidencies.
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