2018 #TrumpShutdown Day 7 Open Thread

“I will be the one to shut it down. I’m not going to blame you for it.”

–Donald Trump, 12/11/18

19 Community Comments, Facebook Comments

  1. davebarnes says:

    Well, speaking of economic multipliers. Or not.

    The press is finally starting to write about all the contractors who are not getting paid and the many who will never be paid for their time off.

    "To present a shutdown as an innocent tactic for resolving gridlock, officials like Mr. Mulvaney must pretend the federal workforce is smaller than it really is. The federal government currently relies on about 2.1 million civil servants, 1.2 million grantees and the equivalent of 4 million full-time contractors to deliver goods and services on the public’s behalf."

  2. Davie says:

    I think *rump’s shutdown fiasco, if made into a reality show, should be titled “As The Worm Squirms” 


  3. JohnInDenver says:

    When I was in South Dakota and had more contact with farmers and ranchers, I learned that many used the week between Christmas and New Years Day to celebrate with family and friends, watch their favorite college football teams in bowls, and do the finances.  Tallying up revenues and costs from last year to ready the hand-off to accountants and bankers, making payments (or getting ready to pay),  considering options for next year, getting ready to apply for loans, all those necessary things.

    With the shut down, those farmers will be missing the most recent information/reports gathered by the government; they may not get government payments (including the tariff subsidies) they were expecting, they won't be able to get government approval for loans. I'm sure they will be impacted in other ways I'm not aware of.  All those things are "indirect" economic hits.

    Consequences will go well beyond the 800,000 employees, the essential ones working without assurance of when they will be paid, the furloughed who hope precedent holds and they DO get paid, and the contractors who won't be paid. 

    • Conserv. Head Banger says:

      The really sad fact of all that, John, is that the bulk of those SD farmers will still vote in 2020 for Trump.

      • JohnInDenver says:

        Maybe … but there is a hint of a change

        2014, the Republican governor was elected with something like a 45 point margin. 2018, the Republican governor was elected by a 3.5 point margin. In 2014, there was no Democratic candidate for AG. In 2018, the Republican won by just over 10 points.

  4. Pseudonymous says:

    Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?

    A Times Reporter Spoke At An Event Organized By Alabama Dirty Tricksters

    Last week the New York Times revealed that money from tech billionaire Reid Hoffman was used to run a small disinformation “experiment” aimed at helping Democrat Doug Jones win last year’s Alabama special Senate election. That resulted in Facebook suspending five accounts and Hoffman issuing an apology.

    But left unmentioned in the Times story was that one of its authors learned about the Alabama campaign when he spoke at an off-the-record meeting organized by the same group who ran the operation. A copy of a confidential report about the Alabama effort, obtained by BuzzFeed News, raises new questions about whether the project was — as the Times said — an “experiment,” or whether it was a straightforward Democratic attempt to replicate the model of the Russian Internet Research Agency.

    During the meeting, Dickerson and Sara Hudson, a former Justice Department employee who now works for a company partly funded by Hoffman, detailed the results of their attempt to use social media and online ads to suppress Republican votes, “enrage” Democratic voters to help with turnout, and execute a “false flag” to hurt the campaign of Republican Roy Moore. [all emphasis mine]

    • mamajama55 says:

      If Dems are to be credible, they need to denounce this, outlaw it, put some rules in with some teeth.  We've found out that relying on "norms" doesn't work.

    • Genghis says:

      So then, to recap:

      – The Alabama GOP selected Roy Moore as its candidate to replace Jeff Sessions in the Senate.

      – During the latter stages of the campaign it came to light that, well into adulthood, ol' Roy had a penchant for forcing himself on 14-year-old girls.

      – Ol' Roy was a complete piece of shit even before the above-referenced penchant came to light.

      – The good Christian white folk of Alabama proffered ludicrous defenses along the lines of, "What do you mean, 'child'? Back in Jesus's day, 14 was middle-aged!"

      – Ol' Roy was the target of a disinformation campaign.

      And yet ol' Roy just barely lost the election. Seriously, man, fuck Alabama.

      • Pseudonymous says:

        Also, 100% not wrong.

        • Conserv. Head Banger says:

          Those stories about Moore's past were probably true. What got Moore on my bad side; easy to say since I don't live there; was his removal, not once, but twice, from the Alabama Supreme Court for ethics violations.

          • notaskinnycook says:

             I visited for summers many times as a kid and lived there for a year as an adult, so I know a little about their politics. If there were dirty tricks that helped keep Moore out of that Senate seat that's a bad thing, but sometimes the ends do justify the means. Moore is dirt and I'm glad he'll live out the rest of his miserable life right there in the heart of Dixie, without ever setting foot in the Senate.


  5. mamajama55 says:

    Bob Rankin's Gallagher fix – nightmare for school funding and city services?? Worth it?

    So the Republican State Senate kiboshed this last session, but Rankin is bringing it up again in hopes that he can get some bipartisan love going.

    As I understand it, it eliminates a conflict the Gallagher amendment has with TABOR – and this legislation is an attempt to unsnarl that mess.

    But it also looks to me like creating different property tax rates for each rural district would make it really difficult for rural special districts to equitably distribute resources for schools and services, since each district would be assessing property tax at a different rate, and presumably, contributing different amounts for school funding.

    For example: we share  some fire and health resources with neighboring counties and districts.

    Our school shares some services, like translator and health and special ed services, with other district schools , coordinated by a BOCES consortium.

    I wonder if having wide variance in property tax rates between districts will make it a logistical nightmare or spur lawsuits over unequal treatment. And if it would be worth it.

    Also, those of you who know Bob Rankin, what do you think of him? Is he a good legislator?



    • Pseudonymous says:

      As I understand it, it eliminates a conflict the Gallagher amendment has with TABOR – and this legislation is an attempt to unsnarl that mess.

      To say there's a conflict between Gallagher and TABOR probably isn't quite right.  It's more that each one is a handcuff on one hand of the property tax system.

      Gallagher is supposed to let the valuation rate float both up and down as total state values change.  Even if TABOR didn't exist, that change would be generally downward for the residential rate.  There are a few years where the valuation rate would have increased absent TABOR (see the chart mid-page here), but that's mostly not the case.  Residential property, generally, has increased more in value than commercial.

      Gallagher, therefore, creates a problem of generally decreasing residential valuation rates.  For jurisdictions in which residential and commercial are generally proportional to the state ratio, the tax base (assessed value) stays relatively the same.  For places that don't mirror that though, it can be a real problem.  That's on Gallagher alone, though.

      TABOR does work with Gallagher to stop that valuation rate increase when it should happen, which is your “conflict,” but is primarily an issue because jurisdictions can't easily raise and lower their mill levies to account for changes in property valuation.  Used to be, they could raise a levy if assessed value dropped, or lower it if it increased.  That's much harder to do now– close to impossible in some places.

      So, the problem is that the tool jurisdictions would use to deal with Gallagher's valuation (mostly) drops, namely raising the mill levy, isn't available due to TABOR (it is, but it's hard to raise mill levies).

      But it also looks to me like creating different property tax rates for each rural district would make it really difficult for rural special districts…

      Based on the article you linked, it looks like Rankin is looking at valuation rates by county, which also mirrors the assessor system.  So, not a nightmare from a logistical sense, as each assessor would be using one set of valuation rates for all properties under their responsibility.  The state would probably bless those.  Maybe a headache for the state, a bit, since they value some property for entities that are in multiple counties (think Comcast, Xcel, railroads, and such), and they'll have to contend with multiple valuation rates, but they already have to break out value by county to pass along to the assessors.

      It will, however shift burdens among taxpayers.  Businesses hate being stuck at 29%.  I bet that drops and that tax burden will be shifted to residential payers.  Also, there will be some shifting of burden among taxpayers in different counties, with a single mill levy drawing a larger amount from folks in a county where their valuation rate is higher than other counties served by the district.

      Also, those of you who know Bob Rankin, what do you think of him? Is he a good legislator?

      There aren't a lot of what I would call "good legislators" in Denver.  He's a rural Republican working for his local districts and business generally, I expect.  I've not heard anything that makes me think of him as a particularly bad legislator, nor that makes me think of him as particularly different from any other person who describes himself as a "constitutional conservative."

  6. DENependent says:

    Lakewood NIMBY Proposal Advances

    A judge has dismissed the lawsuit against a proposal to limit new home building in Lakewood to a 1% annual increase. As far as the law goes, this seems to be the right decision, but this ballot proposal is as dumb as they come. Unless the goal is to push housing prices out of sight and turn Lakewood in South Boulder.

    • ParkHill says:

      People don't want their own neighborhood to change, but when Colorado received 800,000 new people in a decade, you are going to get either Horizontal Sprawl or higher density Vertical Infill. 

      I'm in favor of high density in the transit corridors. That is, permit multi-story apartments near all light-rail lines.

      There are other creative things you can do, like permit alley houses, flag-pole lots, and mother-in-law additions.

      • DENependent says:

        I mostly agree, but I think that alley houses, flag-pole lots, and mother-in-law additions will not contribute to solving any housing problems. On average only 24 alley homes have been built each year.

        The people with money to build these houses also have enough money to not need to build them. The people who might be interested in building them to add to their income do not have the money or credit to do so. On my block, where ADUs are permitted, none have been built. But two new garages have gone in this year.

        • Conserv. Head Banger says:

          A former work colleague, now deceased, was living in Boulder in 1976 when the Danish Plan was passed by the city council. He said the value of his house rose 30% literally overnight. Golden's skyrocketing housing costs were created also due to a restrictive plan.

          Having said that, and knowing my home value would go up greatly if the idea becomes law, I still think it's stupid. Lakewood is larger in area than Boulder and much larger than Golden.Lakewood city government hasn't been exactly enlightened in dealing with housing issues. Their preference has been to add to sprawl in places like Solterra, while mostly ignoring what I refer to as "Lakewood's smelly armpit" (West Colfax from Sheridan to Simms). 

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