Reply Wed 18 Jul, 2018 08:11 pm
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Type: Discussion • Score: 27 • Views: 29,734 • Replies: 1,756

 
edgarblythe
 
  3  
Reply Thu 19 Jul, 2018 06:10 am
Israel passes controversial 'Jewish nation-state' law
Law defines the country as Jewish homeland, further marginalising 1.8 million Palestinian citizens of Israel.
edgarblythe
 
  5  
Reply Thu 19 Jul, 2018 06:24 am
https://scontent.fhou1-2.fna.fbcdn.net/v/t1.0-9/37379219_2010179802339202_8981387244321374208_n.jpg?_nc_cat=0&oh=020617e1040507d4cb43810fa1306c69&oe=5C13B767
0 Replies
 
edgarblythe
 
  4  
Reply Thu 19 Jul, 2018 06:54 am
Donate to Beto O'Rourke's campaign for U.S. Senate
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edgarblythe
 
  2  
Reply Thu 19 Jul, 2018 07:02 am
Easy to blame just Trump for his stupidity, but the entire US government is at fault over this.

Iran opens new centrifuge rotor factory: nuclear chief
Tehran has vowed to boost uranium enrichment capacity to pressure remaining signatories to live up to the nuclear deal.
0 Replies
 
edgarblythe
 
  1  
Reply Thu 19 Jul, 2018 07:14 am
https://scontent.fhou1-2.fna.fbcdn.net/v/t1.0-9/33186755_1729282187158492_3059445835054972928_n.jpg?_nc_cat=1&oh=089b4cf7126a6924fe183dbaa6c6cea4&oe=5BCBBA0E
0 Replies
 
edgarblythe
 
  1  
Reply Thu 19 Jul, 2018 07:20 am
Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is twenty-eight. She was born in the Parkchester neighborhood of the Bronx and lives there now, in a modest one-bedroom apartment. Parkchester was originally a planned community conceived by the Metropolitan Life Insurance Company and was for decades segregated, predominantly Irish and Italian. Today, it’s largely African-American, Hispanic, and South Asian. Ocasio-Cortez comes from a Puerto Rican family in which the parents’ self-sacrifice has been rewarded by their daughter’s earnest striving, and, now, a historic achievement. Come November, Ocasio-Cortez is almost certain to become the youngest woman ever elected to Congress. As recently as ten months ago, she was waiting tables at a taco place near Union Square called Flats Fix. On June 26th, she pulled off a political upset in the Democratic primary for the Fourteenth Congressional District, soundly defeating the incumbent, Joseph Crowley, the most powerful politician in Queens County and the fourth-ranking Democrat in the House of Representatives.

In the general election this fall, Ocasio-Cortez will face Anthony Pappas, a professor at the Peter J. Tobin College of Business. Pappas’s platform appears to center on tax cuts and an obsession with the legal ramifications of his unpleasant divorce, many years ago. It is unlikely that those concerns will be widely shared by voters of the Fourteenth District, which takes in parts of the eastern Bronx and northwest Queens and votes almost uniformly Democratic. (In an oddity of New York election laws, Crowley, who was also the Working Families Party candidate, will remain on that party’s line in November, but his spokesperson said that “this is a total non-thing,” emphasizing that Crowley is a Democrat, endorses Ocasio-Cortez, and “is totally supporting her. She is going to be a member of Congress.”) Ocasio-Cortez has natural presence. She is also well mannered, disciplined, shrewd, and self-possessed. When I asked her if Pappas has a chance, she smiled but would not bite.

Ocasio-Cortez lives around the corner from her favorite restaurant, Taqueria Tlaxcalli, on Starling Avenue. We met there for dinner on a steambath Sunday night just after her victory. The surrounding commercial area is among the most eclectic in the borough: it includes a sari emporium, the Al-Aqsa Restaurant, Bangla Bazaar, the Chang Li Supermarket, halal grocery stores, Iglesia Bautista Fundamental del Bronx, Crown Fried Chicken, the Asian Driving School, and Jerry’s Pizzeria.

When Ocasio-Cortez arrived, the owner greeted her as a local celebrity. In an instant, people crowded around. She is quick to shake hands, hug, hold a constituent’s shoulder. When kids come near, she kneels and talks on their level. Everyone wanted to tell her their reaction to her win, their shock and delight. “Thank you so much!” she told one after the other. These kinds of encounters were happening to her everywhere she went. At a pizza parlor in Grand Central, her waiter nearly swooned. Since the primary, she’s been fielding calls of congratulation “from everyone you can name,” including her ideological lodestar, Bernie Sanders, and Hillary Clinton, who, she said, “seemed to come from a mentoring place.”

We sat down at a table near the window. She allowed that she was getting worn down. “You’re speaking to me when I am still emotionally, intellectually, spiritually, and logistically processing all of this,” she said. “The whole thing’s got me knocked a little flat.”

With good reason. Not long ago, Ocasio-Cortez was mixing margaritas. Today, she is the embodiment of anti-corporate politics and a surge of female candidates in the midterm elections. “It’s a lot to carry,” she said. As a member of the Democratic Socialists of America, she was on the receiving end of Murdoch-media hysteria. The Post greeted her win with the headline “red alert.” Sean Hannity pronounced her “downright scary.” And Ben Shapiro called her a member of the “howling at the moon” segment of the Democratic Party. On the anti-Trump right, Bret Stephens wrote in the Times that “Hugo Chávez was also a democratic socialist,” and warned that, in a national election, the likes of Ocasio-Cortez will be “political hemlock for the Democratic Party.” None of it seemed exactly real. When I asked her where she was going to live in D.C., her eyes widened in surprise, as if it had not occurred to her that she would no longer be spending most of her time in the Bronx. “Not a clue,” she said.

https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2018/07/23/alexandria-ocasio-cortezs-historic-win-and-the-future-of-the-democratic-party?mbid=social_facebook
0 Replies
 
edgarblythe
 
  2  
Reply Thu 19 Jul, 2018 08:09 am

Two days after President Trump’s summit with Russian President Vladi­mir Putin, Russian officials offered a string of assertions about what the two leaders had achieved.

“Important verbal agreements” were reached at the Helsinki meeting, Russia’s ambassador to the United States, Anatoly Antonov, told reporters in Moscow Wednesday, including preservation of the New Start and INF agreements, major bilateral arms control treaties whose futures have been in question. Antonov also said that Putin had made “specific and interesting proposals to Washington” on how the two countries could cooperate on Syria.

But officials at the most senior levels across the U.S. military, scrambling since Monday to determine what Trump may have agreed to on national security issues in Helsinki, had little to no information Wednesday.

At the Pentagon, as press officers remained unable to answer media questions about how the summit might impact the military, the paucity of information exposed an awkward gap in internal administration communications. The uncertainty surrounding Moscow’s suggestion of some sort of new arrangement or proposal regarding Syria, in particular, was striking because Gen. Joseph Votel, who heads U.S. Central Command, is scheduled to brief reporters on Syria and other matters Thursday.

Defense Secretary Jim Mattis did not attend Wednesday’s Cabinet meeting with Trump and has not appeared in public this week or commented on the summit.

[White House tries to clarify Trump’s response to whether Russia still targeting U.S. elections]

“When we are able to provide more details, we will, but rest assured, the U.S. Department of Defense remains laser focused on the defense of our nation,” said Pentagon spokeswoman Dana White.

Current and former officials said it is not unusual for it to take at least several days for aides to finalize and distribute internal memos documenting high-level conversations. Adding to the delay in the case of Trump’s Russia summit is the fact that the president’s longest encounter with Putin, a two hour-plus session, included no other officials or note-takers, just interpreters.

Trump continued to praise his private meeting with Putin and an expanded lunch with aides as a “tremendous success” and tweeted a promise of “big results,” but State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert said the administration was “assessing . . . three takeaways,” which she characterized as “modest.” They were the establishment of separate working groups of business leaders and foreign-policy experts, and follow-up meetings between the national security council staffs of both countries.

White House spokeswoman Sarah Huckabee Sanders listed a number of topics that had been discussed, including “Syrian ­humanitarian aid, Iran’s nuclear ambition, Israeli security, North Korean denuclearization, Ukraine and the occupation of Crimea, reducing Russian and U.S. nuclear arsenals, and of course your favorite topic, Russia’s interference in our elections.”

But while Trump told law­makers this week that he and Putin had made “significant progress toward addressing” these issues and more, neither Sanders nor any other U.S. official from Trump on down has offered specifics on what was accomplished on those subjects beyond what she called “the beginning of a dialogue with Russia.”


President Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin attend a joint news conference after a meeting at the Presidential Palace in Helsinki, on July 16, 2018. (Brendan Smialowski/AFP/Getty Images)
Asked about calls from congressional Democrats for testimony from the U.S. interpreter, Sanders said it was a question for the State Department. Nauert said that there was no precedent for such a demand and that there had been “no formal request” for such an appearance. “Overall, as a general matter,” she said, “we always seek to work with Congress, and that’s all I have on this, okay?”

Some military officials, accustomed a year and a half into the Trump administration to a ­decision-making process that is far less structured than it was under President Barack Obama, appeared unfazed by the lack of clarity. Unlike Obama, who oversaw a national security process that was famously meticulous and often slow, Trump has presided over a more fluid, less formally deliberative system.

Few if any top-level national security meetings, for example, have been held this spring following the administration’s attack on Syrian military facilities in April, according to officials who spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss internal deliberations. That shift, while welcome by those frustrated by the pace of decision-making under Obama, may provide top military officials less regular access to their commander in chief and fewer opportunities to influence the policy process.

[Branding Putin: How the Kremlin turned the Russian president into a global icon]

Nonmilitary officials who were provided minimal, indirect readouts expressed confidence that no agreement had been struck with Putin on Syria, and that Trump — who early this year expressed a desire to withdraw all U.S. troops from that country — made clear to Putin that no American departure was imminent.

One idea under consideration, Antonov said, was a joint U.S.-Russian fight against terrorism in Syria. “It seemed to me, my impression was that the U.S. side listened . . . with interest,” he said. Russia has, like Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, defined all opponents of the Syrian government as “terrorists” and made similar proposals throughout the seven-year Syrian civil war.

The leaders also discussed an earlier agreement Russia had reached with Israel — based on a 1974 United Nations agreement — to keep all Iranian and proxy forces fighting on behalf of ­Assad’s military at least 50 miles from Syria’s border with the ­Israeli-occupied Golan Heights, and not to contest Israeli strikes against perceived threats from Iranian proxies inside Syria.

At the Russian Foreign Ministry, spokeswoman Marina Zakharova said that implementation of summit agreements had already begun. “A lot of what the president of the Russian Federation talked about is now being worked through,” she said. “Relevant instructions are being carried out, and diplomats are beginning to work on the outcomes.”

Richard Fontaine, a former U.S. official and adviser to Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) who now heads the Center for a New American Security, said the Helsinki summit illustrated Trump’s evolving management of national security affairs and his handling of advice from senior advisers such as White House Chief of Staff John F. Kelly, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Mattis.

“It seems to be certain that Trump is becoming more confident in his foreign-policy instincts, and more likely to go with his gut,” Fontaine said. “He seems more comfortable now overruling them and doing his own thing.”

While a void remained in U.S. descriptions of the summit, Antonov called it “important, comprehensive, productive, and constructive.”

Putin is expected to speak about the summit in a speech Thursday.

Antonov said it was “very bitter” to hear the intense criticism in the United States of the Helsinki meeting. He cited Trump’s reference to investigations of Russian election interference as a “witch hunt” and said Russia was “a hostage to the domestic political battle” in the United States.

“When I return from Moscow, I will have the very clear-cut and lucid determination to go knock on every door at the State Department and the National Security Council to understand what we can do together in order to realize the agreements, the ideas, that the two presidents supported,” Antonov said.

“Even in talking with you now, I am afraid to say something positive about the American president,” he said, “because when American journalists or policymakers read my interview, they’ll say Russia is again meddling and helping Donald Trump.”

Troianovski reported from Moscow.

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Karen DeYoung
Karen DeYoung is associate editor and senior national security correspondent for The Post. In more than three decades at the paper, she has served as bureau chief in Latin America and in London and as correspondent covering the White House, U.S. foreign policy and the intelligence community. Follow

Missy Ryan
Missy Ryan writes about the Pentagon, military issues and national security for The Washington Post. She joined The Post in 2014 from Reuters, where she reported on U.S. national security and foreign policy issues. She has reported from Iraq, Egypt, Libya, Lebanon, Yemen, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Mexico, Peru, Argentina and Chile. Follow

Anton Troianovski
Anton Troianovski is The Washington Post's Moscow bureau chief. He previously spent nine years at the Wall Street Journal, most recently as Berlin correspondent. Follow


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0 Replies
 
edgarblythe
 
  1  
Reply Thu 19 Jul, 2018 08:40 am
Alien Seaweed Has Arrived in Antarctica

A foreign invader, a species of alien seaweed, has managed to cross the oceans to reach the frozen Antarctic shores. So scientists may have to give up a cherished belief: that Antarctica is inviolate.

For a century, researchers have assumed that the mix of ocean currents, distance and temperature have kept the Great White Continent shielded from invasion by Pacific or Atlantic flotsam.

But the discovery of strands of kelp on an Antarctic beach – seaweed that may have drifted for considerable periods and a distance of 20,000 kms before becoming stranded far from home – brings an end to that belief. And the discovery suggests that global warming could bring serious changes to Antarctic ecosystems.

“This finding shows us that living plants and animals can reach Antarctica across the ocean, with temperate and sub-Antarctic marine species probably bombarding Antarctic coastlines all the time,” said Ceridwen Fraser, of the Australian National University.

https://www.truthdig.com/articles/alien-seaweed-has-arrived-in-antarctica/
0 Replies
 
edgarblythe
 
  3  
Reply Thu 19 Jul, 2018 09:08 am
Ex-DOJ official reveals hidden meaning of bombshell NYT report: US intel agencies fear Trump is a double agent

https://www.rawstory.com/2018/07/ex-doj-official-reveals-hidden-meaning-bombshell-nyt-report-us-intel-agencies-fear-trump-double-agent/
edgarblythe
 
  2  
Reply Thu 19 Jul, 2018 09:37 am
Insurers donate to Democrats in attempt to undermine support for Medicare for all

http://justcareusa.org/insurers-donate-to-democrats-in-attempt-to-undermine-support-for-medicare-for-all/?link_id=10&can_id=855d6133b6e7cfa658d46dbe9b0d5678&source=email-health-care-costs-in-retirement-not-for-faint-of-heart&email_referrer=email_384420&email_subject=health-care-costs-in-retirement-not-for-faint-of-heart
0 Replies
 
maporsche
 
  3  
Reply Thu 19 Jul, 2018 09:40 am
Someone should really be coaching Ocasio-Cortez if she want's to have a future in politics after her first term. She's made a couple other blunders on things like geopolitical affairs that she shouldn't have made.

She has a bachelors degree in international relations AND economics and she shouldn't be getting things wrong on these fronts.

https://www.factcheck.org/2018/07/ocasio-cortez-wrong-on-cause-of-low-unemployment/
Ocasio-Cortez Wrong on Cause of Low Unemployment
Lash
 
  1  
Reply Thu 19 Jul, 2018 09:55 am
@edgarblythe,
It could be true, but I think a more plausible explanation would be that trump is personally drawn to charismatic strongmen, wants to associate with them, and to be their bud. I'm not sure he's self-aware or intelligent enough to check himself on where this can lead or how it appears to others.

I think also he had great hopes of bursting into the world scene and cutting through a bunch of bullshit, and making some great, substantive changes that he, rightly or wrongly, believes would leave him with some fabulous legacy. This is most likely at the base of a lot of his moves (Russia, NK, trade).

His reckless disregard for what comes out of his mouth has hurt him (so far) more than anything he's actually done--as far as we know.
Sturgis
 
  1  
Reply Thu 19 Jul, 2018 11:02 am
@maporsche,
People take missteps at times, especially when starting out. Pretty sure that just about every politician had blunders early on. (Kirsten Gillibrand is a prime example). Will Ocasio-Cortez learn? - that is the thing we will need to wait for an answer on.

maporsche
 
  2  
Reply Thu 19 Jul, 2018 11:04 am
@Sturgis,
Sturgis wrote:

People take missteps at times, especially when starting out. Pretty sure that just about every politician had blunders early on. (Kirsten Gillibrand is a prime example). Will Ocasio-Cortez learn? - that is the thing we will need to wait for an answer on.


I agree; I just hope she gets the coaching I suggested or some mentor in politics or something to get her up to speed quickly.

She's being ridiculed by the right and thereby making her positions easy to ridicule as well.
Sturgis
 
  4  
Reply Thu 19 Jul, 2018 11:09 am
@maporsche,
I am hoping that Joe Crowley, the guy she is looking to replace will offer up some guidance. He's already has stated he is supportive of he and her candidacy, and he's familiar with parts of the turf she may be less acquainted with (such as that slab of land across the water in Queens).
0 Replies
 
edgarblythe
 
  1  
Reply Thu 19 Jul, 2018 12:53 pm
https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/51doLHROUXL._SX329_BO1,204,203,200_.jpg
Is Government inherently criminal? * If not, then why are there so many psychopaths running the show? * Must runaway Global Government necessarily end in planetary destruction? * If so, what recourse is available to ordinary people? These are some of the vital questions that are addressed in The Joys of Psychopathocracy. Building upon the previous work of American anthropologist Marshall Sahlins, the author extends his concept of “sectoral distance” to create definable “sectors” in the region of “negative reciprocity” (or what he calls “negaprocity”) to help categorize social institutions, including Government, in a new approach to social structural analysis. The results are presented in a clear and easy-to-understand model: Government, regardless of structure or type, is inherently criminal – a defect that no amount of tinkering or reorganization can change. The current global super-structure of interlocking Governments and NGO’s – the most extensive in recorded history – is the single largest contributor to the Holocene Extinction Event which is currently in progress. A point of no return has been crossed such that the current trend cannot be reversed. The book ends with a discussion of a coming Event that will serve to change the world for those who seek an escape.
0 Replies
 
edgarblythe
 
  2  
Reply Thu 19 Jul, 2018 01:26 pm
Keep up the pressure

House Democrats are launching an official Medicare for All Caucus in an effort to promote a single-payer health-care bill.

The caucus, which will officially be announced Thursday, comes as an increasingly larger number of Democrats warm to the idea.

The idea, championed by Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), is now favored by many potential 2020 Democratic presidential contenders.

ADVERTISEMENT
The caucus will launch with about 60 members and will be led by Democratic Reps. Pramila Jayapal (Wash.), Debbie Dingell (Mich.) and Keith Ellison (Minn.), with more expected to sign on in the coming weeks.

Ellison is the lead sponsor of H.R. 676, the Expanded and Improved Medicare for All Act, which has the support of a majority of the House Democratic Caucus.

The bill contains only an outline of how it would raise the trillions of dollars needed to establish universal health care, but it has become a focus of Democratic energy.

A recent poll from the Kaiser Family Foundation found a majority of Americans support the idea of single-payer health care.

“It’s the increasing view of everyone that single-payer is inevitable,” said Dan Riffle, spokesman for Ellison.

“It’s going to pass,” he said, and the caucus will attempt to hammer home that message.

http://thehill.com/policy/healthcare/397683-house-dems-launch-medicare-for-all-caucus
oralloy
 
  1  
Reply Thu 19 Jul, 2018 05:39 pm
@edgarblythe,
edgarblythe wrote:
House Democrats are launching an official Medicare for All Caucus in an effort to promote a single-payer health-care bill.
I wish they'd devote the same energy to protecting and improving the Obamacare exchanges.
0 Replies
 
oralloy
 
  -2  
Reply Thu 19 Jul, 2018 05:40 pm
@edgarblythe,
edgarblythe wrote:
Israel passes controversial 'Jewish nation-state' law
Law defines the country as Jewish homeland, further marginalising 1.8 million Palestinian citizens of Israel.
Israel is a Jewish state. If Israeli Palestinians want to fit in, they should consider converting to Judaism. If they don't want to fit in, they should consider leaving.
 

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