Monday Open Thread

“Details create the big picture.”

–Sanford I. Weill

24 Community Comments, Facebook Comments

  1. Duke Cox says:

    Having watched the Donald speak on several occasions now, I think I can say, pretty uncategorically, that he is a fascist. If one follows the common threads of his rambling, egocentric, blather, it leads to nothing more than a condemnation of everyone and everything that isn't personally embraced by Trump.

    Given the power of the U.S. presidency and the position of Commander in Chief of the U.S. military, I believe Donald Trump would be nothing short of "Il Duce". This is a thoroughly dangerous man.

    • Zappatero says:

      he's talk radio personified, a regurgitation machine repeating that same garbage Pierce referred to a few days ago. All he needs to puke up is a few key words and his supporters (the simpletons who believe everything they hear via amplification modified radio waves) will react accordingly. 

      It doesn't matter if anything is true because it's been pre-amplified by Levin, Rush, that sick hateful bastard Savage and all their dwarf pretenders. Each of us could lay out the issue and their complaint with a minimum of prompting: Benghazi, EPA, Iran, ISIS, Planned Parenthood, illegals!, emails, IRS, and on and on as each issue is useful for that day's news. 

    • denverco says:

      Sad thing is that he represents a good portion of the gop crazy base.

      • Conserv. Head Banger says:

        I did a little peak bagging this past Friday with a long time friend who is a liberal Democrat. He likes the Donald. He wouldn't vote for him, but seems to appreciate that the Donald is bringing out in the light all the undertone among the GOP.

        Trump a fascist?  Maybe, but he's not the scary one. For me, Cruz is the real fascist. Ever read any of his daddy's pronouncements (Rafael Cruz is a fundamentalist christian preacher)? Teddy takes right after his old man in pushing the fundamentalist christian lines. Ted's big push now is to energize tens of thousands of pastors to save religious liberty (meaning the freedom to discriminate); save marriage (from what, I don't know), save life (stop abortion, defund PP, get rid of contraception), and to save "traditional values" (quotes are mine, values are those the fundies declare to be values).    

        All together now, let's hum the bars and refrain for "Give me that old time religion."



        • BlueCat says:

          Good luck finding an R who gets through primaries to be a candidate for anything these days who wouldn't vote essentially the same way as Cruz on these matters. Good luck finding a Republican majority legislature that doesn't give the highest priority to passing legislation in line with these "values". Your so called traditional conservative Republican elected pol who's with you on the traditional conservative (completely discredited by decades of empirical evidence BTW) economics but doesn't vote exactly the way Cruz would on social issues is pretty much extinct. 

          • Conserv. Head Banger says:

            "good luck finding an R……"  Oh, they're out there. But generally most try to stay quiet on these kind of issues. Otherwise, they face a primary challenge. Remember that front groups like Club for Growth and Americans for Prosperity have their own litmus tests. It's not just the fundies. 

        • Duke Cox says:

          I have been saying for quite some time now that John Hagee is among the most dangerous men in America. This effort by Cruz is not new… the Christian corporate media has been beating the drum along with every fundamentalist pastor from Pennsyltucky to Tucumcari and everywhere else the local brethren buy in to the hatred and fear, the righteous rage at the "others" sold to them relentlessly by the greedy bastards who live like kings while avoiding the treasury with ease…

          Donald Trump could have said anything when he walked into that boisterous crowd in Alabama…he chose to mention Billy Graham….small wonder….


    • Canines says:

      Amusing column in the Guardian:

      It hurts to say it, but sometimes Donald Trump speaks the truth

      His criticism of “frontrunner” Jeb Bush – who is really only the frontrunner in the minds of billionaires – have been spot on, yet not something any of the other candidates would dare say for fear of denigrating the last two Republican presidents, Jeb’s brother and father. Trump took credit for the record audience during the first GOP debate by remarking, “Who do you think they were watching? Jeb Bush?” He’s right – Bush is boring. And I don’t mean boring in the technocratic, attention-to-details way. I mean he is mind-numbingly unoriginal and can’t even express those unoriginal ideas in a politically adept manner.

      Trump has not minced words on George W Bush’s Iraq War, either, calling it the “disaster” that it was and is, and hammering Jeb for his stumbling defense of his brother’s war and its decade-long aftermath…

      When questioned and criticized for donating to Hillary Clinton and other democrats, Trump didn’t hide from it or apologize; he openly bragged about it: of course he donated to Democrats, because he was buying access and the politicians therefore had to kowtow to him.

      Trump has no problem brazenly calling out the other Republican candidates, who spend their time sucking up to billionaires, either. “I wish good luck to all of the Republican candidates that traveled to California to beg for money etc. from the Koch Brothers. Puppets?” he tweeted. You’re not going to find more truth in any statement this election in 140 characters or fewer.

  2. Zappatero says:

    The War of Northern Aggression:

    "You know, when the Constitutional Convention happened, there was a man named John J. Chapman, who said slavery was like a sleeping serpent," film maker and historian Ken Burns told CBS host John Dickerson. "It lay coiled under the table during the deliberations; thereafter, slavery was on everyone's mind, if not always on his tongue."

    "You know, we've grown up as country with a lot of powerful symbols of the Civil War in popular culture. That would be 'Birth of a Nation,' D.W. Griffiths' classic, and 'Gone with the Wind,' of course," he explained. "And in that, it postulates, among other things, both films, that the Ku Klux Klan, which is a homegrown terrorist organization, was actually a heroic force in the story of the Civil War. So it's no wonder that Americans have permitted themselves to be sold a bill of goods about what happened, oh, it's about states' rights, it's about nullification, it's about differences between cultural and political and economic forces that shaped the North and the South."

    But Burns recommended that Americans read South Carolina's Articles of Secession to get the real story on why the states went to war against each other.

    "[T]hey do not mention states' rights. They mention slavery, slavery, slavery," he pointed out. "And that we have to remember. It is much more complicated than that, but essentially the reason why we murdered each other — more than 2 percent of our population, 750,000 Americans died — was over essentially the issue of slavery."

    The KKK lived here in beautiful CO and sprang to life to continue the efforts of the failed insurrectionists. It lives on today in one form or another. 

  3. Zappatero says:

    The thing about bipartisanship:

    According to a recent above-the-fold, front-page article in the New York Times by Jason Horowitz, Senator Bernie Sanders "bellows" "snarls" and "glares" his way through campaign appearances. His candidacy, Horowitz writes, amounts to little more than giving "disaffected Democrats" the opportunity "to vent their anger at the list of national ills they believe are caused by big business and its conservative allies."

    The dismissive tone of such reportage tells us more about what ruling elites would like to sweep under the rug than it does about anything of substance relating to Sanders' critique of American society.

    Dismissive tone, none of that 'round here.

    The only good thing about the corporate media's horse race coverage of the 2016 race over a year before the voting is that it gives Bernie Sanders and the social movements he represents ample time to coalesce and bring real progressive policy proposals into the nation's political consciousness.

    Despite the plutocrats' largely successful deployment of their wealth to skew the playing field, given the chance, activists can unite with the Sanders campaign to focus the agenda, and maybe even punch a hole in the sealed discourse of Washington-think and lead a long march into the realm of electoral politics.

    The most potent ideas for addressing the urgent problems facing the country don't come out of the air-conditioned offices of the American Enterprise Institute, but arise from the kind of unity of thought and action the Sanders campaign embodies. There exists the potential to take the goals of the wider social justice movement and bake them right into the Democratic Party platform for 2016.

    Would rather bake those ideals in and reinforce the differences between the parties than constantly whine that we can't possibly be bipartisan with those batshit insane Republicans, because, you know, both sides do it.

    The social activism swirling around right now — from environmental and climate change groups, civil rights organizations, advocates for breaking up the Wall Street banks, feminists, Latinos, LGBTQ activists, Black Lives Matter, the peace movement, labor unions, teachers, nurses, students, the opponents of corporate trade deals dating back to the 1999 WTO protests in Seattle — all these groups have the potential to join the Sanders campaign and come together in national mobilization.

    Senator Sanders is giving voice to those who are tired of the teacher bashing and the warmongers in the party, the "moderates" who depend on corporate cash and are as servile to the ruling elites as the Republicans. This struggle will require dividing the Democratic Party, taking on the corporate media (which always throws a wet blanket on the idea of progressive change), and building a new coalition that has a real chance of winning elections.

    (Insert snide reference from Dem Hack to "President Hubert Humphrey" here.)

    The baby boomers who've run the country since the election of Bill Clinton in 1992 presided over the loss of something fundamental in America. Their loving bipartisan embrace of all things "neo-liberal" has fused 21st Century technology with 19th Century labor relations. Just look at how Amazon or Uber exploit their employees.

    Adding injury to insult, Republican governors and state legislatures, (enabled by the U.S. Supreme Court) have concocted all manner of ingenious ways to suppress the voting rights of African Americans, Latinos, young people, and other likely Democratic voters.

    And don't forget the planet is heating up to a point where across the globe emergency mitigation efforts are now necessary and promise to become increasingly costly.

    On the Republican side it's just plain scary. Despite the corporate media's blandness about it all, the shit that spews regularly from the mouths of the GOP presidential candidates should be shocking to us all.

    Triangulation is a failed strategy and much of the well-intentioned compromise of the last several years has been met with disdain and disgust by Republicans – and it has not been reciprocated. Not every Dem is worthy of our support, especially, I say, Dems who are stuck in DC Conventional Wisdom mode and have turned on autopilot.

    The Obama presidency, albeit facing an unbelievably vicious partisan opposition, ended up leaving behind far more missed opportunities than accomplishments. The “hope and change” enthusiasm of 2008 was allowed to fizzle out sometime between Citizens United and the 2010 midterm elections.

    And new voters, who could’ve been turned into lifelong Democrats, were instead turned off by a lack of follow through on the inspiring rhetoric.

    Thanks, Obama……..and other acquiescent D’s.

  4. Progressicat says:


    Your cache is still sometimes stale for me when I'm not logged in.  I'll check in to see if stories have new comments, but I don't log in when I do.

    Here's an example from about now.

    Not logged in:

    Logged in:

  5. BlueCat says:



    I mean, you're gonna jump ahead of Webb, O'Malley and Chafee — and you'll post pretty good numbers against the GOP in the swing states.


    The FBI continues to make progress recovering that wiped server for personal emails…


    Long live your bromance with the prez.


    In the past, "Uncle Joe" has been a bit too authentic for your own good. But in this field, it's a virtue.


    You've taken a showhorse position and turned it into a workhorse position.


    If you think about it, your Oval Office trajectory is at least as good as Clinton's.


    Dick Cheney didn't have the cojones. You do.


    You know, at least until you either get yourself into trouble … or emerge as the frontrunner.


    And you can probably bench press more than Martin O'Malley.


    And wear those aviators every. single. damn. day.



    It's just too perfect.

  6. Diogenesdemar says:

    Well, well, well …

    … anyone care to bet which GOPer will be the very next to suggest the elimination of Social Security in favor of private investment accounts?

  7. Conserv. Head Banger says:

    Great weeping, wailing, gnashing of teeth over on PJ Media this morning (it's a far right blogging web site. I reply there occasionally, running the risk of getting reported as abusive or even banned (they don't like real conservatives)).

    Turns out that the big "pro-life" protest against Planned Parenthood in Detroit was rudely interrupted by a satanist group with signs stating American is not a theocracy; end forced motherhood. They also did a somewhat bizarre skit of bathing a couple women in fake breast milk as dictated by a couple fake clergymen. Really have to love political theater.   C.H.B.


    • BlueCat says:

      Poor CHB. You still haven't noticed that, for all practical purposes, the far right is the real 21st century conservatism. You're a relic. Next door to extinct. Not only that but your ideas about choice and birth control never came from the conservative wing of the Republican party and your ideas on conservation come straight from the famous progressive reformer, TR, who was a trust busting, tree hugging pain in the ass to the real conservatives of his day.

      I fear you are attempting to hark back to a Camelot that, like all Camelots, never existed. The Republican party quite simply was not more purely "real" conservative in the good old days. It wasn't majority strict conservative at all. It had a moderate centrist majority with very conservative and quite liberal wings. It started out as the progressive reformist party, not the party of the right. The conservative right was never what you keep claiming it's supposed to be. You have defined real conservatism basically as the way you see yourself.

      • Conserv. Head Banger says:

        Blue Cat: I think you need to do more homework. Or pay less attention to Zappatero's meanderings.  😉   My ideas on conservation come straight from TR? Really? Yes, he's part of it. But consider that most of the environmental laws governing our society today were signed into law by Richard Nixon. The president who signed more wilderness bills into law than any other; since the Act was passed in 1964; was Ronald Reagan. The ultra-pork barrel and ruinous Two Forks dam proposal here in Colorado was vetoed in 1990 by the EPA of George H.W. Bush. The then largest national monument in the entire country was created by George W. Bush (over Dick Cheney's "dead body", I might add). 

        I'm not the only person who defines real conservatism as the way I see myself; come to think of it, that is a rather shorted sighted statement. Here's but one of many links:

        Oh, have you already forgotten the passage and signing of the wilderness bill for the Hermosa Creek area, north of Durango, earlier this year? That would not have happened without the strong support from Rep. Scott Tipton (R-CO) and the Republican-led Congress. Another wilderness bill for Nevada also passed this year. Regards, C.H.B.

        • BlueCat says:

          You're still talking ancient history. You know none of those Presidents you mention would get past a GOP primary today. Conservatives worship their myth of Reagan but the real Reagan would be next door to a RINO by today's standards. There may be some sad real conservatives like you floating around but you won't find any getting through GOP primaries and/or getting elected to anything nowadays. I'd say what all the elected Republican pols claim is conservatism is the real 21st century conservatism. Just try getting anything like the examples from the past you mention through any Republican majority legislative body today or a candidate subscribing to anything like them nominated as the GOP candidate for the presidency. Sorry CHB. You're a dinosaur. Love you anyway.heart

        • MapMaker says:

          CHB, it sounds like you're making the case that the Republican party is the party of No True Conservatives.

          The article you cite in the Salt Lake Tribune is interesting, and there are some humorous moments in the comments, but I don't think you can point to any Republican politician who has taken it to heart and called for the end of welfare cowboys. Furthermore, the only politicians who support Bundy seem to have an R after their name.

          John Oliver's latest commentary points out that there are no Republican co-sponsors for a house bill to extend civil rights to LGBQ citizens. If this bill came up for a vote, do you think there'd be any Republicans who would vote for it? 

          The current Republican presidential candidates seem to fall into two overlapping camps. The bigoted xenophobes, represented by Trump and the religious dominionists who want to replace the Constitution with the Bible, represented by Cruz.

          Your claim that there are politicians out there who are “true conservatives” but who are hiding so they don't get primaried  is a stretch. After all, invisible and non-existent are pretty much the same.

          I'd agree that the values of the current Republican party and its candidates do not fit the definition proposed by the Trib article:

          Conservatism recognizes the importance of order, personal responsibility, values and the rule of law. Conservatism is also about freedom, but not the kind of unfettered freedom that fosters anarchy. A conservative understands that freedom and responsibility go hand-in-hand. You cannot have one without the other.  

          From what I can tell, this is largely your definition of conservatism too.

          If that's the case, who represents you?  Or are you one of those cast off demographics like black, female and gay Republicans, despised by the political party to whom they claim allegiance?  

        • BlueCat says:

          As for Tipton, all pols are willing to do such things when it's clear they're really important to their constituents and party leadership is always willing to cooperate in order to strengthen their candidate's position as long as it does their general agenda no harm. The main force is still devoted to the quaint idea of taking "back" federal land and the proposition that government is the enemy and privatization is the holy grail. How about Tipton on a woman's right to make her own reproductive decisions and all the other social rightie issues? Weak tea, my dear CHB.

          Show me a Republican majority legislative body that isn't constantly devoting its energy to restrictions on choice, access and funding for birth control, science based sex education, while promoting draconian voter suppression measures. Show me a candidate for the GOP Presidential nomination with any realistic chance of attaining it who doesn't both identify as conservative and strongly support the far rightie religious/social agenda.

          99% of the party you support owns the definition of conservatism now. It's what they call themselves and it bears little resemblance to yours. Except for the discredited conservative economic theory. You still have that in common with 21st century conservatism. So….yes

  8. Davie says:

    Here's a bit of interesting news on a completely different topic:

    Earlier this month, Seattle City Council unanimously approved a "gun violence tax" on sellers of firearms and ammunition, directing proceeds toward violence prevention programs and research beginning in January. A companion measure requires gun owners to report cases of lost and stolen firearms to police.

    After a change of underwear, the NRA has, naturally, filed suit to have the city ordinance overturned.

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