RoundTable for December 2018

Posted by: Jeffery J. Haas

RoundTable for December 2018 - 12/03/18 05:05 PM



THE ROUNDTABLE FOR DECEMBER 2018

Welcome to the Roundtable for December, 2018.
With the tumult of the November 2018 mid-terms behind us, our thoughts now turn to the year ahead.
Will we be able to carve out rational positions and create constructive energy for meaningful change? The mood seems hopeful for many.

A lot of movement in law enforcement and the judiciary has caused many to anticipate some major developments affecting the current administration, but it remains to be seen what the new Congress will do with the information it receives.

Meanwhile, at the state level, some outgoing majorities seem to be attempting some last minute revanchism, effectively locking the steering wheel on the incoming legislature.
Without a doubt, this will stir some court challenges and make for some interesting news stories in the coming months.
At the national level, the lame duck legislature, while not quite rocking back and forth in the fetal position, seems to have been at least somewhat quelled by the expected turnover in the House.

It remains to be seen how the current administration will actually deal with a split government but early signs portend a fractious but disorganized effort to create a bumper crop of spin and conspiracy.

We may have truly arrived at that moment the Chinese like to describe as "interesting times". And here at the Rant, may the muse bless us with the good fortune to weather it all and the fortitude to interpret it to our own benefit.

Blessings to all of you, it's good to be here.

(Photo: Artist's rendition of the New Prague Flour Milling Co. 1920)
Posted by: NW Ponderer

Re: RoundTable for December 2018 - 12/03/18 07:58 PM

Well, the weather report for December calls for flurries (of court filings), storms (of tweets), and vicious winds (of hot air). Who says there is no climate change? Expect severe changes beginning Jan 3.
Posted by: Jeffery J. Haas

Re: RoundTable for December 2018 - 12/04/18 04:42 AM

Originally Posted By: NW Ponderer
Well, the weather report for December calls for flurries (of court filings), storms (of tweets), and vicious winds (of hot air). Who says there is no climate change? Expect severe changes beginning Jan 3.


Sounds like a true winter sh!t storm to me wink
Posted by: Jeffery J. Haas

Re: RoundTable for December 2018 - 12/04/18 05:39 AM

Indict Pence first.
Pelosi won't pardon Trump.
Posted by: Jeffery J. Haas

Re: RoundTable for December 2018 - 12/04/18 06:10 PM

One of the final acts of the Republicans in the House and Senate will be to allow the Violence Against Women Act to expire in two weeks before their recess.

RAW STORY
Posted by: Jeffery J. Haas

Re: RoundTable for December 2018 - 12/04/18 08:14 PM

One of the final acts of the outgoing Scott Walker administration is to try to strip most powers from incoming Democrats.

"This is a coup": Protests Engulf Wisconsin Capital

Quote:
As Wisconsin Republicans voted to plow ahead with a sweeping package of legislation that would allow outgoing Gov. Scott Walker to strip significant authority from Democratic governor-elect Tony Evers, outraged Wisconsinites flooded the state capitol Monday night to denounce the GOP's brazen attempt to subvert the will of the voters and "undo democracy itself."

"This isn't a bill. This is a coup," Randy Bryce—aka the "Iron Stache"—said before Wisconsin's Joint Committee on Finance, which deliberated and ultimately voted along party lines to advance the Republican plan, which seeks to transfer many of Evers' crucial executive powers to the GOP-dominated legislature. A final vote on the plan is expected as early as Tuesday.
Posted by: Ujest Shurly

Re: RoundTable for December 2018 - 12/04/18 09:33 PM

One of the new Corner Stones of all future Republican platforms. Can not win fairly, cheat.
Posted by: Ujest Shurly

Re: RoundTable for December 2018 - 12/04/18 09:35 PM

The Republican Legislature (House and Senate) here in Michigan is trying the same thing.
Posted by: Jeffery J. Haas

Re: RoundTable for December 2018 - 12/04/18 10:40 PM

Meanwhile, it looks like Fox News might have gotten it right for once.
Treason for the Season, like the graphic says... ROTFMOL



Richard Garza on Twitter

Quote:
"Looks like the graphics team at Fox News is sending a subliminal message..."
Posted by: Jeffery J. Haas

Re: RoundTable for December 2018 - 12/05/18 03:05 AM

Meanwhile the fact that Mueller is recommending NO JAIL time for Flynn probably means you better be stocked up on popcorn. popcorn2

Posted by: Jeffery J. Haas

Re: RoundTable for December 2018 - 12/07/18 12:40 AM

Will Donald Trump lie in state in the Capitol Rotunda?
It would be redundant because he has already lied in state after state after state.

Bada boom bodda bing!!
Posted by: Greger

Re: RoundTable for December 2018 - 12/07/18 04:18 AM

That Bush casket train was pretty impressive. Locomotive #4141 doing the pulling. and a viewing of the casket as it passes by. It says a lot for the country that we can still pull off a major funeral production/procession.
Posted by: pdx rick

Re: RoundTable for December 2018 - 12/07/18 05:55 AM


F/A/O Jeff

Yesterday on the way to work, I heard a track that I have never heard before, Bob Seger's Turn the Page. It was really good. I went to YouTube tonight to hear the track again. One of the commenters was wondering if Leon Russell played on the piano. Would you know?


Posted by: pondering_it_all

Re: RoundTable for December 2018 - 12/07/18 07:05 AM

Quote:
Will Donald Trump lie in state in the Capitol Rotunda?

Let's see, we have an opening in late January. How's the last week look for you?

I joke, but dropping dead could work out very well for Trump. No impeachment, no indictments, no prison. Just a clean getaway.
Posted by: Jeffery J. Haas

Re: RoundTable for December 2018 - 12/07/18 07:10 AM

Nope, Leon did not do keyboard tasks on "Turn the Page" however the song WAS recorded in Leon's studio at his compound at Grand Lake of the Cherokees in Disney Oklahoma.

It's too bad it is impossible to upload images directly from a computer on this site, and I wish I knew how to do it because publicly available images of Leon's Grand Lake house are as rare as unicorns but I have nearly a hundred of them.

But here's one.

Posted by: pdx rick

Re: RoundTable for December 2018 - 12/09/18 11:55 PM



You can upload pics to Disqus or Photobucket and link from them to here. smile
Posted by: Greger

Re: RoundTable for December 2018 - 12/10/18 01:37 AM

Photobucket got cranky about that a while back so I switched to Imgur. They seem to have cooled their jets about third party hosting because at some point my avatar re-appeared.

Woops...spoke too soon...Photobucket wants $5 a month for it. I'll stick with Imgur.
Posted by: pdx rick

Re: RoundTable for December 2018 - 12/12/18 04:33 AM



I love the way Pelosi just punched Fatboy in the nuts today and branded his threat as #TrumpShutdown


Spines are back in vogue in DC. smile
Posted by: pdx rick

Re: RoundTable for December 2018 - 12/12/18 04:51 AM



Posted by: pondering_it_all

Re: RoundTable for December 2018 - 12/12/18 09:38 PM

Quote:
Spines are back in vogue in DC.


Surprise, surprise! All you Pelosi haters: Who would guess the biggest balls in Washington belong to a 78 year old White woman.

In all fairness, Trump thinks HE can shut down the government and does not realize that Nancy Pelosi is the one person who will actually be able to do that come January. As Speaker, she controls all the money, not the President. He can shut down some Executive branch offices by fiat, but Congress can continue without him. If they pass bills by a veto-proof majority, his veto power doesn't matter. And anything really important, they typically do pass with near unanimity.

Effectively, all he can do is to shutdown Homeland Security, ICE, and the Border Patrol, and let the caravans cross unmolested!
Posted by: Jeffery J. Haas

Re: RoundTable for December 2018 - 12/13/18 08:49 AM

Awww CRAP, Theresa May survived the no confidence vote.
DAMMIT.
Posted by: pdx rick

Re: RoundTable for December 2018 - 12/13/18 12:45 PM



Happy Anniversary to Doug and Amy. smile

(I remember it's around Christmas time. )
Posted by: Jeffery J. Haas

Re: RoundTable for December 2018 - 12/14/18 02:32 AM

Originally Posted By: pdx rick


Happy Anniversary to Doug and Amy. smile

(I remember it's around Christmas time. )


You are correct, he just posted it to FB the other day.
Much love and respect, Doug and Amy!!

Love,
Your dysfunctional CHB family laugh
Posted by: pondering_it_all

Re: RoundTable for December 2018 - 12/15/18 05:24 AM

A federal judge in Texas has just found ACA unconstitutional. His reasoning is that Obama's people said the mandate was critical, and since the mandate penalty is now zero the whole thing has to go. Seems a bit cart-before-the-horse to me but some people will do anything to kill it. His decision is stayed until enrollment ends on Saturday. It will be interesting to see what the appeals court does with it.

Quote:
“Today’s ruling is an assault on 133 million Americans with preexisting conditions, on the 20 million Americans who rely on the ACA for health care, and on America’s faithful progress toward affordable health care for all Americans,” California Attorney General Xavier Becerra said in a news release.


My wife just checked today and she is signed up for a Blue Shield policy for 2019, until she goes on Medicare in September. I suspect everybody who is signed up for a 2019 policy will keep that policy as written. Insurance companies don't get to change their policies retroactively.
Posted by: NW Ponderer

Re: RoundTable for December 2018 - 12/15/18 05:47 AM

Justice Roberts says there are no "Obama" judges, or "Bush" judges. Bull. Judge Reed O'Connor puts the baldface lie to that. This is an ideologue Bush judge. Like virtually every Trump appointee, and most Bush appointees, he's only interested in pursuing his social agenda. He's tried to strike down every Obama policy he's encountered, and even laws in the books for decades, like the Indian Child Welfare Act, Title IX transgender rules, anything that smacks of equality. This is what we have to look forward to unless we can take over government entirely for decades and begin to reverse the influx of grossly unqualified and ideological activist judges foisted on us by unscrupulous Republicans.
Posted by: pondering_it_all

Re: RoundTable for December 2018 - 12/15/18 06:47 AM

I note that GOP majority legislators in several states are doing their best to ignore or gut citizen initiatives. Right now that's happening in Michigan, Utah, and some other states. I predict that those legislators are going to learn the hard way that they are there to represent the citizens of their state and subverting an initiative is a failure to do that.

Come next election, opponents are going to use those betrayals of citizen votes to great advantage. You can get away with lots of things, but that is something that will come back and bite you in the ass.
Posted by: NW Ponderer

Re: RoundTable for December 2018 - 12/15/18 04:52 PM

Originally Posted By: pondering_it_all
Come next election, opponents are going to use those betrayals of citizen votes to great advantage. You can get away with lots of things, but that is something that will come back and bite you in the ass.
Let us fervently hope. I think the most important criteria for election of representatives is that they be ethical. Very few Republicans can meet that criteria. This kind of authoritarian behavior is why they must be removed, root and branch, from the electoral process. The Republican party is rotten to the core.
Posted by: pdx rick

Re: RoundTable for December 2018 - 12/15/18 06:02 PM



All of the investigations that Fatboy is under:

Posted by: pdx rick

Re: RoundTable for December 2018 - 12/16/18 05:12 PM


Posted by: Jeffery J. Haas

Re: RoundTable for December 2018 - 12/18/18 05:15 AM

The ruling striking down Obamacare is a disaster for Republicans

Quote:
Whether they admit it or not, some Republicans were likely hoping for the Texas court ruling to be reversed quickly and definitively. If the Affordable Care Act is disrupted and Congress has to fix the system, it will force a protracted a public debate where all of the GOP's unpopular ideas about healthcare are front and center. And if they decided to pass legislation restoring Obamacare's provisions, they'd be admitting to themselves and the country that they never had anything to replace the law with.


It's their tar baby now, and hoo boy is it ever a stinker.
Can you imagine what would have happened if that Texas judge had released his ruling PRIOR to the 2018 mid-term elections?

In any case, he may have just screwed the pooch for 2020.
Posted by: pondering_it_all

Re: RoundTable for December 2018 - 12/18/18 08:01 PM

Let's hope it gets through the appellate court and makes it to the Supreme Court. That should be just in time for the 2020 election. If Republicans manage to lose every Senate seat in contest, Democrats would have a supermajority.
Posted by: logtroll

Re: RoundTable for December 2018 - 12/18/18 09:50 PM

Earmarks are coming back!!
Posted by: Jeffery J. Haas

Re: RoundTable for December 2018 - 12/19/18 07:49 PM

"Clean it, dickhead!" Teen who who drew swastika on building forced to scrub it while bystanders mock him

Quote:
A teenage boy was recently filmed getting heckled as he cleaned up swastika graffiti that he left on the floor of a shopping center in the United Kingdom.




VIDEO LINK

More of this, please.
Posted by: NW Ponderer

Re: RoundTable for December 2018 - 12/21/18 12:25 AM

There was a rare sighting of the blonde Panda today. No one seemed to know where it came from, but it behaved like other pandas. Eats shoots and leaves. Apparently it is migrating to Florida.
Posted by: Jeffery J. Haas

Re: RoundTable for December 2018 - 12/23/18 04:07 AM

Merry Christmas from Steve Winwood!

Steve Winwood playing a church organ.
Posted by: Greger

Re: RoundTable for December 2018 - 12/24/18 11:36 PM

Posted by: Greger

Re: RoundTable for December 2018 - 12/26/18 02:28 AM


Well, happy Christmas from the swamp. The girls made a tampon run last night and hit a deer on the way home. It wasn't a reindeer and there was no jolly elf nor sleigh in sight but there still might be a country song in it somewhere...
Posted by: pondering_it_all

Re: RoundTable for December 2018 - 12/26/18 02:48 AM

I hope everyone is okay. Those things can kill you.
Posted by: Greger

Re: RoundTable for December 2018 - 12/26/18 04:00 AM

Crumpled the car a little but it was on the dirt road so it wasn't a high speed collision.
Posted by: Jeffery J. Haas

Re: RoundTable for December 2018 - 12/26/18 08:21 AM

Awww CRAP, sorry you got banged up. Hope everyone's okay and the car crumpling wasn't too serious.
Merry Christmas
Posted by: pondering_it_all

Re: RoundTable for December 2018 - 12/26/18 11:32 AM

I see the official government report on the wall prototypes is out, though heavily redacted. (They don't want to give all the plans to the smugglers.) They had an army team try to breach 10 foot high sections and scale 30 foot high sections. Everything failed! The scaling test had the crew throw a section of 2x4 with rope attached over the wall. Smugglers are MUCH more sophisticated. They can fabricate special grappling hooks out of steel, bring ladders. Tunneling was tested with 10 foot deep footings, but most border tunnels are much deeper since the Border Patrol has listening devices in the soil at the border. The breach tests had to be stopped because they thought the wall sections might collapse and kill somebody.

I think the idea that you can build a barrier that can't be scaled, breached, or tunneled under is stupid. They have to have monitoring and a response by agents. That much is obvious and the Border Patrol admits it. So the real purpose of a barrier is to slow down any crossing attempt until the guys can get there. But the border is 2000 miles long, so they need troops stationed every mile or so for a quick response. And a successful breach could let in hundreds of crossers (or more), so each of the 2000 Border Patrol station has to have several men there.

Monitoring is the easy part: They have computer programs that can do that now, better than humans staring at monitors. So the real problem is the labor cost of all those Border Patrol agents. You'd need about 50,000 of them for full coverage, but most of them would just sit in the station and do nothing. Some of the stations would be pretty isolated, too, so good luck finding people to do that job. (Maybe we can hire some Mexicans!)

Anyway, I think we done't need a 30 foot high wall. We need a 30 foot WIDE area between chain link fences filled with razor wire. That would slow down any breach so the guys could get there. Bollards in the ground could prevent vehicles crashing the fences.

The East Germans had the same set of problems and their solution was lots of soldiers on top the wall with machine guns. Maybe we need to address the real problem instead: The vast majority come here to work, so bite the bullet, issue all legitimate residents ID cards, and throw people who employ people without the ID card in prison.

Republicans might not like that though, since citizen ID cards would prevent some of their voter suppression schemes.
Posted by: logtroll

Re: RoundTable for December 2018 - 12/28/18 01:38 AM

A friend of mine...

Pepperl Forge

My wife got me one of the iron bunnies for a Juul gift.
Posted by: Jeffery J. Haas

Re: RoundTable for December 2018 - 12/29/18 01:45 AM

Originally Posted By: logtroll
A friend of mine...

Pepperl Forge

My wife got me one of the iron bunnies for a Juul gift.


I can't say I find the bunnies attractive, maybe even disturbing but all the other stuff is absolutely gorgeous. Sorry Loggy, my last name sorta means "rabbit" in German but that's one bunny rabbit I'd have to pass on haha.

I would love to have the door lock and key set in Image #8 (Arts and Crafts Entry Set) if it could be modified with a larger depress for Karen.
Posted by: Jeffery J. Haas

Re: RoundTable for December 2018 - 12/29/18 05:18 AM

Ofc of Personnel Mgmt:Government workers...during shutdown

Quote:
The U.S. Office of Personnel Management has offered federal workers affected by the partial government shutdown a guide for negotiating with creditors, landlords and mortgage companies while their income is cut off.

The Thursday tweet notes that workers should consult with a "personal attorney" for advice but offers templates for how one might seek financial assistance for various financial obligations.

Among the suggested strategies: A furloughed employee might offer to trade maintenance services such as painting or carpentry work in exchange for a reduction in rent.


USOPM on Twitter

Hmmm, I wonder if a mortgage banker would agree to those terms.
"Let me do some maintenance on the house I bought from you, and you forego the mortgage payments for a couple of months."

By the way, why is OPM open during this shutdown? Is Jared in charge of it?
Posted by: NW Ponderer

Re: RoundTable for December 2018 - 12/29/18 08:35 PM

Quote:
Overall, nine federal departments and dozens of smaller agencies have been shuttered. There are a couple of agencies, however, including the Department of Veterans Affairs and the Defense Department, that won't be impacted because they are funded through Sept. 30, 2019. But for many others, the impact is already being felt.
Government shutdown by the numbers (abc) Then there are these two nuggets: Trump moves to freeze pay for federal workers amid government shutdown (USA Today) vs. Trump personally intervened to pay Coast Guard in shutdown (Washington Examiner). Of course, the reality is that neither of those was a Trump "initiative". They are schemes created by his ideologue staff to further right wing wet dreams, who have convinced him that all federal workers are "democrats" - by which they mean, non-autocrats.
Posted by: pondering_it_all

Re: RoundTable for December 2018 - 12/30/18 08:09 PM

Quote:
all federal workers are "democrats"


Well, if they weren't before, maybe they are now!
Posted by: NW Ponderer

Re: RoundTable for December 2018 - 12/30/18 08:34 PM

It may well be true, too, because most federal workers are community- and service-oriented, which are not typical Republican traits.
Posted by: pdx rick

Re: RoundTable for December 2018 - 12/31/18 12:45 PM



It doesn't seem that Fatass' "big, beautiful wall" is ever going to be built. It's been down-graded to a "metaphor."

LOL
Posted by: Jeffery J. Haas

Re: RoundTable for December 2018 - 12/31/18 07:19 PM

And as a last act of 2018, a Brooklyn woman whose husband survived the Holocaust awoke to giant swastikas scrawled on her door.
BROOKLYN!

When it is happening in Brooklyn, you know it's not a metaphor.
You know it's real.

RAW STORY

WCBS - TV2, New York
Posted by: pondering_it_all

Re: RoundTable for December 2018 - 12/31/18 08:20 PM

Quote:
It's been down-graded to a "metaphor".


30 feet of concrete, steel slats, transparent, whatever. Might as well add laser turrets every 100 feet and killer mole robots to prevent tunneling. If you are never going to get it, might as well make it as fancy as possible.

If you actually want to do something about it, throw some of their employers into prison. With no possibility of work, something like 99.9% of them would not come here. Or even better, prison for employers who did not verify workers in the federal temporary work-permitted database. That way we can still have our gardeners and maids, but with vetted and documented guest workers.