News Bits du Jour

First, business — I am starting another mini-fundraiser to keep me going a bit longer here. Still struggling, but I think 2024 could be a bit better. Here is the Go Fund Me link. The “donate” button at the top of the right-hand column is connected to PayPal.

Also, I have not heard from gulag and have not received any response from my emails to him. His last comment was November 13. All we can do is hope.

Now, politics. ABC News has a report on what Mike Pence told Jack Smith’s crew about January 6. There are no bombshells, but it’s an interesting read. Pence remains someone who is hard to pin down. Even now he seems to want to be known for his loyalty to Trump while at the same time he is (understandably) separating himself from Trump’s attempt at a coup. He blames Trump’s “outside” lawyers, like Giuliani and Powell, for misleading Trump about the election results. He still can’t admit to Trump’s craven dishonesty and inability to face facts he doesn’t like.

The Koch Network has endorsed Nikki Haley for the GOP presidential nomination. Now we’ll see if the Koch Network has any clout with the base; I’m guessing not. But this could help boost Haley’s campaign fundraising quite a bit. She seems to be the one the Old Guard and what’s left of the “normies” are rallying around, now that they’ve gotten to know Ron DeSantis. But see Paul Krugman, “Nikki Haley Is Coming for Your Retirement.” She wants to bleep up Social Security, basically.

Trump, meanwhile, finally has said something about policy. Which is that he wants to replace Obamacare. He said,

“The cost of Obamacare is out of control, plus, it’s not good Healthcare. I’m seriously looking at alternatives,” he wrote. “We had a couple of Republican Senators who campaigned for 6 years against it, and then raised their hands not to terminate it. It was a low point for the Republican Party, but we should never give up!”

He seems not to remember that the reason killing Obamacare failed to pass is that there was nothing to replace it. And as far as Republicans are concerned, there still isn’t. And there never will be. And the Biden campaign is already reminding everyone about preexisting conditions.

14 thoughts on “News Bits du Jour

  1. He seems not to remember that the reason killing Obamacare failed to pass is that there was nothing to replace it.

    IMHO, the only reason the repeal vote failed is that McCain voted against repeal as an FU to Donnie "I like people who don't get captured" Trump. The mere lack of an actual replacement policy would never stop Rs from repealing part of the social welfare net.

    • Three Republicans voted to leave Obamacare alone. These were Susan Collins, Lisa Murkowski, and John McCain. If any one of those votes had gone the other way, Obamacare would have been repealed. Collins and Murkowski voted as they did because there was nothing to replace Obamacare.

      • McCain also claimed his vote was that repeal should go through regular order. Democrats passed Obamacare, and immediately shoved through a reconciliation bill to modify the new law. That's how the process should work – yes, the fixes are usually months or years later, but, they got the law passed with a miraculous 60 votes in the Senate for cloture. They passed that law, then mucked with it using the process that exists for the very purpose of mucking around with costs and payments.

        Republicans were doing repeal through reconciliation (which should be just for mucking around with costs and payments), and fired parlimentarians until they got one who agreed the changes were allowed under the process.

        So I believe him – but I must say, the FU to TFG ("That Former Guy") probably played a role, and I suppose it might have been the primary motivation. Big FU, and a cloak of nobility to don? That would be irresistible, most likely.

  2. O.T. I watched Rosalynn Carter's service today, it was quite nice, her grandson gave a great summary of her life. I didn't know she had a foundation to save the monarch butterflies, that puts her at the top of the heap with me. He talked about all the other great things she did, it was a long list. I had to turn off msnbc's coverage as they were running a breaking news flashing chyron which I thought was completely classless, it the woman's funeral? Not to be outdone FAUX didn't even bother to carry the service, wouldn't want to interrupt that important reporting on how horrible everything is? CNN ran the coverage without interruption and without "breaking news" chyrons. Also after the service CNN had a nice panel and they spent 10 minutes or so discussing her legacy. MSNBC and Katy Tur went right back to Israel/Hamas b-roll, FAUX was FAUX. So CNN gets the win for corporate cable bobble-head coverage of a former first ladies Funeral! I sent a few rubles in the paypal, thank you for the mahablog.

  3. Makes you wonder about the character of these repugs. Pence say," he didn't want to hurt his friend". Seems to me that after four years of dealing with Trump, Pence should've realized no friendship with Trump is possible. It's a one way street.

    Then Mark Meadows with his, "I didn't want to be yelled at". Maybe in a command structure where you are legally bound to have to put up some shit from a superior that maybe acceptable, but in Meadows case it shows he's a cur who doesn't possess the self esteem to stand up to the likes of someone like Trump. A total lack of self respect and dignity.

  4. I understand Melania was at the Carter funeral. It was a "by invitation" event so the decision was made by the Carters and/or their kids some time ago, I guess. Melania was seated next to Michelle Obama. I would not guess either of them was delighted but it put Melania as far away from Former President Carter on that row as possible. Much as I dislike Melania Trump, it's to her credit that she did attend and nothing that I heard about her conduct was disrespectful. IMO, Donald would have been perfectly happy if she snubbed the Carters and all Democrats by not attending. Again, that's my guess.

    She did attend. She did not misbehave. I'll give her credit for that.

    We have more hostages exchanged and an extension of the ceasefire in Gaza. More trucks with aid are being let through. I'll take that, also. 

    Santos thinks he will be removed this week. IMO, he's so screwed legally there's only one long-shot intervention that could save him – a pardon from Trump in 2025. Santos might have, at one time, had the option of resigning and copping a plea deal to one of the lesser charges. Maybe. But he's an arrogant prick who overplayed his hand. Once he's kicked out, he has nothing to offer in a plea deal. 

    The endorsement by the Koch Foundation of Nicki Haley probably won't seriously affect her chances, but they may diminish Trump's. It depends on the goals of the Koch people. They don't want Trump in the WH. The Koch Family has openly thrown down against Trump so if Nicki can't pull off an upset, they SHOULD have an "Anybody But Trump" fall-back position. Because Trump will throw the DOJ and the IRS at the Koch businesses if he wins and the Koch people must know it. So if nothing propels Haley into contention, the SuperPac that the Koch people control should shift into a campaign to get moderate voters to reject Trump. Before anyone points it out – the Koch people may not think the way I do. 

    Might it happen that big money from the Koch fortune will go into swing state advertising to highlight that Trump is a proven business cheat (NY civil trial) who also cheated on all his wives (NY criminal trial) and is a proven rapist (E Jean Carroll civil trial)?

    The shoe I'm waiting to drop is the trial date for Trump in GA. Willis has proposed a date that may presume (properly) that Cannon won't go to trial on schedule (FL federal documents case) and Cannon will allow delays that push back the trial until after the election. She can get away with doing almost nothing very slowly. That's an opening for GA to step in. If Cannon tries to proceed and then stops to block Willis, she runs the risk of becoming too obvious, or being demonstrably incompetent to the degree Smith can have Cannon removed. It will be interesting how far out on a limb Cannon will go for Trump to try to delay the GEORGIA prosecution, which is way out of her lane

    • "Much as I dislike Melania Trump, it's to her credit that she did attend and nothing that I heard about her conduct was disrespectful"

      I would not have invited her but I'm not near as gracious as the Carter's! I wondered why President Obama wasn't there, maybe they sacrificed him as to not snub Stump, gee I hope not. I really liked her grandson's speech, he really captured her as not only a wonderful philanthropist but as a normal Grandmother. I liked the story he told about when the family was on a flight (Delta coach) some years ago and once they got to cruising altitude Rosalynn whipped out a bag that had bread and tupperware containers of lunch meat and started making sandwiches for all of them and the flight crew. Talk about down to earth! I can't imagine Hillary, Laura, Michelle and certainly not Melania making sandwiches much less fly in coach!

  5. I miss the gulag.  He would spell NiKKKi correctly.  I am ready to hear from a real republican, Liz Cheney, who will be on a book promo tour.  Rachael Maddow is doing an interview on her show.  

    I rarely quote evangelical ministers, but I will attempt at least a paraphrase for the one who was on Morning Joe.  He is not endorsing Trump, and unlike most gives a reason.  He says he will not endorse Trump because no one wants any of their relation to turn out like Trump.  For that reverend. you deserve a resounding AMEN. 


    O.T. Again. Ever since Rosalynn Carter passed I can't stop thinking that they really were the best First Family in my (our) lifetime. Maybe it is the fuzzy filter of the past but no president has really told the truth since. Reagan and Clinton don't even register. Obama came close but he had some low life’s shaping policy, certainly a more frantic media environment.. Stump, well Stump. Biden tries but again it's a different time and he has hitched wagon to some bad pennies. There just isn't anything in politics today or since  like the Carter's. I have always regretted that I didn't vote for JC in 1980. Threw my first vote in the trash. I turned 18 in 1979 and Jimmy had reinstated registration for the draft, I think in 78? I was an asshole pot smokin punk rocker and no way I was going to end up in quagmire like Vietnam. So I said hell no and filled out a form at the post office as a conscientious objector on my 18th birthday.  When it came time to vote on Nov. 4th I pulled the lever for Barry Commoner, socialist environment dude. Of course JC was beaten badly by Reagan and had little chance of winning Indiana but every vote counts and I can't help but feel responsible for putting that piece of shit Reagan in the white house. I wasted my first vote, I'll never get over it!



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