Tag Archive | Elizabeth Warren

Non-COVID-19 linkspam (reproductive health, corruption, climate change, the scam of InfoWars)

So I’m reading this Scrooge McDuck comic, which was only written 30ish years ago, and some of the values dissonance is wild. “Wherever I go, there are blackguards who want to steal their fortune rather than work for it!” laments Scrooge, whose last three money-earning ventures involved cattle rustling on stolen land in Texas, homesteading on stolen land in Montana, and digging a gold mine on colonized land in South Africa.

…anyway, have a bunch of political links from the last couple months. Specific players and policies may have come and gone, but the overall themes are forever.

“Warren’s vision is deeply rooted in her policies solving the ills of society, whereas Sanders is calling for a social movement to upend the American political order as we know it. Then again, it’s hard to ignore that they back many of the same policies.

“During the Trump presidency, corruption has flourished in previously unthinkable ways, and at such a remarkable rate, that it’s almost impossible to keep it all straight—here’s what we know so far.

“Trump decided to skip a debate hosted by the network just before the Iowa caucuses in January 2016, and hold his own, competing event instead — a televised fundraiser for veterans. Shockingly enough, it turned out the event wasn’t quite on the level.” (He’s been ordered to pay back $2 million. Baby steps.)

“Their 2016 paper, “Wealth Inequality in the United States Since 1913,” distilled a century of data to answer one of modern capitalism’s murkiest mysteries: How rich are the rich in the world’s wealthiest nation? The answer—far richer than previously imagined—thrust the pair deep into the American debate over inequality.”

“America is one of the only developed countries in the world that pays people to donate blood, much of it sold abroad (70% of the world’s plasma is of US origin), and as commercial blood donations have soared, blood now accounts for 2% of the country’s exports — more than corn or soya.”

“The picture that emerges is of a system of staggering complexity, riddled with obstacles and cracks, that prioritizes babies over mothers, thwarts women at every turn, frustrates doctors and midwives, and incentivizes substandard care. It’s ‘the extreme example of a fragmented system that cares about women much more in the context of delivering a healthy baby than the mother’s health in and of itself.’

“I quit film school and moved nearly a thousand miles to Austin, Tex., fully invested in propagating his worldview. By the time I found myself seated next to [Alex] Jones speeding down the highway, I had seen enough of the inner workings of Infowars to know better.

“Veneto regional council, which is located on Venice’s Grand Canal, was flooded for the first time in its history on [November 12] — just after it rejected measures to combat climate change.”

The Remissness of our People in Paying Taxes is highly blameable; the Unwillingness to pay them is still more so.

Ben Franklin on taxes: “The Remissness of our People in Paying Taxes is highly blameable; the Unwillingness to pay them is still more so. […] All the Property that is necessary to a Man, for the Conservation of the Individual and the Propagation of the Species, is his natural Right, which none can justly deprive him of: But all Property superfluous to such purposes is the Property of the Publick, who, by their Laws, have created it, and who may therefore by other Laws dispose of it, whenever the Welfare of the Publick shall demand such Disposition.”

“Fincher’s $70,000 farm subsidy haul in 2012 dwarfs the average 2012 SNAP benefit in Tennessee of $1,586.40, and it is nearly double of Tennessee’s median household income. After voting to cut SNAP by more than $20 billion, Fincher joined his colleagues to support a proposal to expand crop insurance subsidies by $9 billion over the next 10 years.

“The IRS actually threatened to revoke the church’s tax-emption because Pastor George Regas said: ‘Mr. President, your doctrine of preemptive war is a failed doctrine,” on the Sunday before the 2004 election. […] Conservative churches that actively campaigned for President Bush in 2004 were not audited by the IRS.

“‘When he came in and showed me all of the documents, it was just unbelievable,’ Henry said. ‘Who gets foreclosed on when they’ve made all payments on time?’

Obamacare passed a major milestone in California, which late last week announced lower-than-expected healthcare premiums for its 5.3 million uninsured, less than many small businesses now pay in group plans….In contrast, the refusal by red-state America to create these health exchanges, which would be more local control—a supposed Republican value—and to accept federal funds to expand state-run Medicaid programs for the poor, means that about half the states are turning their backs on their residents, especially millions of the poorest people.”

Old Economy Steven. It hurts my heart a little how true some of these are.

At least we can leave all this on a hopeful note:

“The [Consumer Financial Protection Bureau] reviewed my complaint, and sent me an email the very next day saying they had submitted it to Fifth Third Bank. The email directed me to my own account page that would show all the correspondence among the parties. When Fifth Third Bank responded two days later, CFPB notified me immediately by email of the new development. […] A week later, the bank refunded $280 – all the fees they had charged me.

So, hey, we had an election!

I was lurking on the Google map from early in the night. Ohio was already leaning blue when I got there, so the big vote wasn’t as much of a nailbiter as it could have been.

Can’t decide what my favorite part is:

* We got Elizabeth Warren!

* We got a bunch of female senators overall!

* Including Tammy Baldwin, our first openly gay senator-elect! Including Mazie Hirono, our first — well, in her own words: “I’m a woman. I’ll be the first Asian woman ever to be elected to the U.S. Senate. I am an immigrant. I am a Buddhist. When I said this at one of my gatherings, they said, ‘Yes, but are you gay?’ and I said, ‘Nobody’s perfect.’

* Creepy rape-apologist candidates who want to legislate about the female body without having the first idea how it works: kicked to the curb across the nation! Because Claire McCaskill has ways of shutting that whole thing down.

* “Stephen” managed within the space of half an hour to give us innuendo about spanking, lament the sight America (read: himself) in sexy high heels, and trade air-kisses with Jon before yelling “I love you!”

* Same-sex marriage all over the place! Maryland, the state I grew up in! Also Maine and Washington! And in Minnesota, an initiative to ban it was voted down!

* We get to keep our gay soldiers and our health care!

* Constant and flagrant lying: shown not to be a winning electoral strategy!

Also: Puerto Rico may possibly be on the path to becoming a state? I can’t wait to see the new 51-star design of our flag. Although it will be awfully inelegant to no longer have a 100-seat Senate. Does Hawaii still want to secede? (Of course, I’d rather not give up Mazie Hirono…) Or maybe we can merge the Dakotas. There’s no reason we need two of those.

And finally: after the votes were mostly counted and the concession speeches coming in, I got to cuddle with a pretty girl. So! All things considered…a good night :D