Tuesday, December 13, 2016

What do we do?


So many petitions to sign, so many letters to write, so many protests to be a part of.  What will work?  What do we do?


I still don't have the answer to that question, but I will continue to spread thoughts, ideas, action plans for the Trump Resistance.

I'm going to post something about the Electoral College vote that will occur next week.  I want to be clear that I think the chances of 35-40 REPUBLICAN TRUMP electors voting instead for Hillary Clinton are slim to none.  But engaging in the types of protests listed below makes it clear that we WILL NOT ACCEPT Trump as President; that the opposition is strong.  Because of this, I am sharing this post that came across my Facebook timeline earlier today:


CALL TO ACTION - PLEASE REVIEW - PLEASE DO ONE OR MORE OF THESE THINGS IMMEDIATELY - OR ALL OF THEM, IF YOU CAN - PLEASE SHARE - THE FUTURE OF OUR COUNTRY WILL BE DECIDED NEXT MONDAY, DECEMBER 19TH: 
#TreasonousTrump #PutinsPuppet #SecretCIA #RussianHackers 
"It became clear to me last night that this man is not only unqualified to be president, he's a danger to the republic. I do think the Electoral College should choose someone other than Donald Trump to be president. That will lead to a fascinating legal issue ... but I would rather have a legal problem — a constitutional legal problem -- then to find out the White House was now the Kremlin's chief ally." Rep. Jim Himes (D-Conn) House Intelligence Committee 
Hillary's Campaign Roars Back to Life! 
Currently Hillary is ahead by 2.85 Million votes or 2.1% (we may hit 3 million) - Hillary has received more votes than any white male whose run for President. 
Statement made by Hillary for America Chairman John Podesta:
“The bipartisan electors' letter raises very grave issues involving our national security,” Podesta said. “Electors have a solemn responsibility under the Constitution and we support their efforts to have their questions addressed.”
“Each day that month, our campaign decried the interference of Russia in our campaign and its evident goal of hurting our campaign to aid Donald Trump,” Podesta continued. “Despite our protestations, this matter did not receive the attention it deserved by the media in the campaign. We now know that the CIA has determined Russia's interference in our elections was for the purpose of electing Donald Trump. This should distress every American.”
 
ACTION ITEMS: 
1: Write The Electors (note: their vote is finalized Dec 19th)a: www.asktheelectors.org (email)b: http://directelection.org/ (you pay to have your letter snail mailed)2: Sign these Petitions and Share! (one has 5 million signatures)a: https://www.change.org/p/new-york-attorney-general-eric-schb: https://www.change.org/p/electoral-college-make-hillary-cli3: Make These Calls
a: Call your Senators and Representatives to join bi-partisan investigation into the following: Russia's interference in our election, Trump's conflicts of interest and ties to Russia, delay convening of electoral college until investigation is completed and electors are given an intelligence briefing. Find your Senator and Representative here: https://www.usa.gov/elected-officialsb: Call or Message the White House - express your support of President Obama's call for a 'deep dive' into our elections and Russia's interferencecall: (202) 456-1111 or via Facebook https://www.whitehouse.gov/contact/chatc: Call the Department of Justice and ask that a full investigation is launched into Russia's intervention in the 2016 election Department Comment Line: 202-353-1555Department of Justice Main Switchboard: 202-514-2000IMPORTANT INFORMATION TO SHARE and ACT ON!California Party Chair and elector, Christine Pelosi (daughter to Nancy Pelosi) has written a letter/petition that demands a full Intelligence Briefing on the scope of Russia's interference in our election to elect Trump and the extent of Trump's conflicts of interest with foreign nations/leaders/banks, specifically his ties to Russia. California Party Chair Pelosi is currently asking other electors to sign on. Please forward to any electors you know!https://extranewsfeed.com/bipartisan-electors-ask-james-claPresident Obama has called for a full investigation into the extent of Russian interference and a growing bipartisan effort is underway lead by Senators Chuck Schumer and John McCain - and today Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell held a press conference announcing his support. 13 Republicans are now on board as well as a much larger list of Democratic support in both the House and Senate.Here are links on this:http://www.politico.com/…/obama-orders-full-review-of-elect…http://www.defenseone.com/…/obama-orders-10-year-d…/133789/…http://www.huffingtonpost.com/…/chuck-schumer-russia-invest…https://twitter.com/NateSilver538/status/808387776232194048http://thehill.com/…/309850-mccaskill-russia-meddling-in-el…
          OTHER ACTION ITEMS: 
1: Please call the House Oversight Committee and support the call for a bipartisan review of Trump's financials and conflicts of interest at 202-225-5074
2: Please call Senator Dianne Feinstein & ask that she will investigate Russian intervention!Senator Dianne Feinstein Senate Intelligence CommitteeOffice: (202)224-3841SF (415)393-07073: Please call Senator Lindsey Graham and thank him for being the first Republican to act!Senator Lindsey Graham Office: (202) 224-5972Fax: (202) 224-3804: Please call Rep Elijah Cummings to encourage action in investigating Russian Intervention Rep. Elijah Cummings (202) 225-4741Fax: (202) 225-31785: Please call your Senator and Representatives (even if they are Republican) and express your concern and to join in these investigations!https://www.usa.gov/elected-officials6: Call Senator Barbara Boxer's office and communicate support for challenging the Electoral College (202) 224-3553
7: Make plans to Protest in D.C for the inauguration https://www.facebook.com/events/162261777572934/Republican Electors are indeed shifting and we only need 37 to act in good faith in the best interests of our nation!
 
"When in the Course of human events it becomes necessary for one people..."#WeThePeople do hereby request, In light of the #SecretCIA reports and #FBI intel on #RussianHacking and interference of our election, In light of Trump's business ties with Russia and personal relationship with Putin,
In light of Trump's top staff and cabinet picks having personal ties and business relationships with Putin and in Russia demonstrating serious conflicts of interest and allegiance to our Country and her peoples, In light of Trump's actions to obstruct ALL recounts from happening, In light of Trump's clear and egregious conflicts of interest he has yet to address regarding his business ties to foreign nations, banks and powers, In light of Trump's clear demonstration of unfitness to hold the office of the Presidency through his actions and lack of regard for the institutions and organizations the Executive Branch relies on to run in accordance with the duties of the President, In light of a growing bi-partisan effort of Senators and Congressmen calling for a full investigation into Russian electioneering and interference (a possible act of War), In light of the fact that 2.85 million more people voted for the Democratic candidate, Hillary Clinton, to be our next President:
 
We The People demand Congress postpone the convening of the Electoral College, in light of a systematic failure of the 'fourth estate' to keep We the People informed, iIn light of partisan electioneering by FBI Director Comey against DOJ instructions and in direct violation of the Hatch Act,
We ask that the Electors of the Electoral College receive a full intelligence briefing prior to their vote.
We the People support delaying the Electors voting until a later date so this most important and grave duty can be fulfilled with the utmost of responsibility to We The People...
Please contact your Senators and your Representative TODAY and ask they support the investigation - that it is done immedidately - and that they support delaying the Electoral College vote.
Find the contact information for you Senator and Representative here:https://www.usa.gov/elected-officialsHelpful Arguments for an Electoral College that is a fairer reflection of WE THE PEOPLE by Constitutional Law Professor Lawrence Lessig and supported by Senator Boxer and Representative Jan Schakwoskyhttps://medium.com/…/the-equal-protection-argument-against-…AMAZING LINK FOR anyone interested in #TheResistance wanting to take action. Updated weeklyhttps://docs.google.com/…/174f0WBSVNSdcQ5_S6rWPGB3…/htmlview#FINAL NOTE: We are in un-chartered waters. 17 members of the intelligence community, the President and a growing consensus in the House and Senate have concluded our election has been compromised to some degree. It is our absolute duty to ourselves, our nation and our future that we investigate the scope of these actions. We must not allow ourselves to go quietly into the night. Please act. Please don't give up. We must all #FightLikeHill for our Country!
Clinton camp supports intel briefing ahead of Electoral College voteHillary Clinton’s top political adviser John Podesta released a statement on Monday in support of the effort.THEHILL.COM

Not all of the above links are complete; so I will have to come back and add the appropriate links.  I will be sharing these kinds of posts and articles frequently.  


Saturday, December 10, 2016

Russian Oil, Russian Hacking, and Donald Trump

Let's put this together and make sure everybody knows and understands this:

The head of Exxon-Mobil, Tillerson, the man that Trump has reportedly pegged to be Secretary of State, was very much involved with and in favor of an Exxon-Russia-oil (Roseneft) deal. The Obama administration had nixed this deal due to Russia's invasion of the Crimea. The US under Obama, Kerry, and Clinton has taken a somewhat hard line by using sanctions against Russia and its expansionist desires. Now Putin will manage to fast-track that oil deal after all (and probably get rid of the sanctions) by backing Trump. Question: Is there a smoking gun? Is there any evidence of back door dealings between Trump people and the Russians either about the hacking or about this deal and the Exxon guy? We all heard Trump calling on hackers to look into Hillary Clinton, and we know something about Paul Manafort, but that's not the same as a smoking gun. If there was such a smoking gun, would the Repubs even investigate it?



More on all of this later, including relevant links...

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Republicans Are Disgusting. Overtime Regulations.


Finally!  Overtime for 4.2 million workers who are treated like dirt by their employers!  


Well.... not so fast.  Nobody is getting out of the no-overtime trap very soon. 

I know this overtime trap well as my husband was stuck in it for several years.

Exempt From Overtime

We all know that employers are supposed to pay time and a half to employees who work more than 40 hours a week.. However, there is a loophole.  If an employer considers you a manager or supervisor, that employer may well get out of paying you overtime if your salary exceeds $24,000 a year. Yes, if you have a whizbang job that involves management activities and you make more than $24,000 a year, you may be considered EXEMPT from those overtime rules.  Your boss can work you until the cows come home and you are stuck -- until or unless you can find another job.

What this has meant is that millions of people who held the title "Manager" but only made $25,000 or $30,000 a year could be imposed upon to work 50, 60, 70 or more hours a week.. because they were exempt from overtime regulations!

Thanks, Obama!

Thanks to President Obama and the Obama-led Department of Labor, on December 1st, 2016 -- next week -- that $24,000 salary cutoff was slated to go up to $47,000 a year--- which meant that millions of overworked supervisors would actually get overtime.. finally.

Here's the way Politico framed it:
The Labor Department regulation, previously set to take effect in Dec. 1, effectively restored overtime pay to the middle class after decades of erosion had reduced it to a benefit available only to low-wage workers.
(That Politico article provides a good summary of this whole issue.)


But No!!

Except that that long-expected relief was just blocked by a Federal judge who seems to think that this shouldn't be a Labor Department regulation; that, if it was going to pass muster, it needed to be an Act of Congress.  So all of those hard-working people toiling 50, 60, 70 hours a week with no overtime are screwed.. as usual.  The sad thing is that this federal judge was an Obama appointee! 

Close to home.
  
My husband was one of those employees caught in this exempt squeeze a few years back.  When he was considered a non-supervisory employee, a sales associate, he was eligible for overtime.  But then he was moved into a management position.  The duties and the hours were really difficult.  He was a store manager for a nationwide chain, so not only was he responsible for all of the daily questions, concerns, problems, reports, money, people, etc.. But if the store alarm went off in the middle of the night, he was on call.  If someone couldn't come in and he couldn't find a replacement, he worked extra hours even if it was his day off.  He averaged about 55-60 hours a week.

His company actually did pay a pittance for those extra hours.. about four dollars an hour.  Yep.  Four bucks.

I can't imagine the absolute sadness, the despair actually, of so many people with that "Manager" title who make 30K or 35K and get no overtime.. who were looking forward to some compensation for all of the work that they were going to do during the upcoming Holiday season.  And now.. nothing.     

We have vicious people in this country.

I don't know what to say when I read some of the comments about this.  I don't know what kind of people we have in this country.  Here's an example:
It's not the governments job to interfere and over regulate the private sector.  Employees must negotiate their own benefits.

That kind of comment frustrates me because it is so obviously wrong.  It is the kind of thinking that has been used against workers' rights, minimum wage, overtime rules, for generations now.. As if an employee is really able to negotiate equally with an employer.  As if an employee can always pick up and leave and find a same or better job if the conditions are not right.  

How can people still think that way?  

How can people vote for Donald Trump?

Now, since I mentioned Trump, let me take up that comment about Republicans...  This was blocked by an Obama appointed federal judge.  So why blame Republicans?  Because Donald Trump had said that one of the first things he wanted to do was to roll back this rule, assuming it had gone into effect December 1st. Because you can bet your bottom dollar that the plaintiffs in this lawsuit are mostly Republican voters.  Because the reason that the current ridiculously low bar for overtime pay has remained so ridiculously low for decades is mostly due to Republican legislators and administrations.

There is no joy in Mudville...

Somewhere tonight, in up to 4.2 million households in this country, there is no joy as workers who thought they were going to get some relief, some compensation for those 50 and 60 hour weeks they usually work during the holiday season, are not going to be getting anything.

Friday, November 18, 2016

Things We Can Do

Watch this space for continual updates of Things We Can Do to innoculate the country and the world against the Donald Trump presidency.

Here is the latest update of Things We Can Do..What Do We Do? added on December 13, 2016.  


If you have other ideas or have seen other relevant links, please comment here or on
my Molly Facebook page.  I plan on updating this page at least once a day through the Inauguration.


Peaceful anti-Trump protest.
Photo from peopledotcom .

1. The long Hail Mary pass: Write to the electors to throw that very long Hail Mary pass of getting the Electoral College to vote for the popular vote winner, Hillary Clinton, vs. Trump. Writing to the electors directly is better than signing petitions, though I will include links to the largest petitions here later today. 


More information and links here:
Here's the big 4.5 million name petition on Change.org.  Remember though that the Electoral College doesn't meet in a group; they meet in the state capitals.  We need to appeal to Republican electors in the states that are able to vote as they see fit.  We need about 44 Republican electors to change their votes.

2.  Sign one of the many petitions to Department of Justice to investigate the election, Trump's ties to Russia, etc.  Better yet, CALL the DOJ to insist that they investigate the election. From one of my friends: 

Call the DOJ, Department of Justice at 202-353-1555 and you can speak to a person who will take your information, and it will be forwarded to the correct person to call you. You can ask the questions we've all been asking, like is this Election being investigated for fraud,Comey, Russians, Wikileaks?

3.  Call or write to your CongressCritters, both your Senators and your Representatives.  Make an initial contact.

If you have Democratic CongressCritters, congratulate them on being elected/reelected.  Remind them that they are the only block between Trump (and his merry band of racists and misogynists) and the American people.  Tell your Democratic Congressperson that you are counting on them to do whatever they to help the American people and encourage them in their fight. Mention your key issues; that is, how you may personally be impacted by one of Trump's "promises".

If you have Republican CongressCritters, keep your letters respectful, but remind them that you will be keeping track of their votes.  Also mention your one or two key issues, again, how you may personally be impacted by Trump's "promises".

Keep your letters and emails short, just a paragraph or two.  You may wish to try snail mail; Congresspeople get fewer of those than emails or phone calls.

4.  Donate/work to get Foster Campbell, the Democrat from Louisiana in the December 10th Senate runoff, elected to the US Senate.  His election STILL won't give the Democrats the majority, but it will be REALLY close.  His win would mean a 51-49 split, and the Democrats would be one seat closer to gaining control in 2018.  This will put a lot of pressure on ALL Republicans in preparation for 2018.  A Democratic Senator from Louisiana?  Well, remember that Louisiana elected a Democrat, Jon Bel Edwards, as governor just last year.  Look, $5 to $10 can mean a lot.  Consider five bucks!  More if you can!  


More information about Foster Campbell at the links below:  





6.  Keep Trump's favoribility rating low.  Bill Palmer discusses that here at the Palmer Report:
Other ideas and plans:

I haven't yet reviewed this New York Times article, but I'm including the link anyway:

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Let's Stop With Hillary's "Flaws"

Please, people, let's stop with the "Hillary's flaws" stuff.



I'm tired of the allusions to Hillary's "flaws" that I have seen in so many posts, so many comments and articles as people try to deconstruct this election. 


Democratic Senators. Photo via C-Span. 

Look, every candidate or politician has flaws, Bernie Sanders, Obama, Elizabeth Warren, every last one. Hillary's flaws are like a hangnail compared to Trump's gangrene. But we got gangrene! 

Perhaps we need to realize that this country is a lot more "flawed" than we ever thought it would be. People watched the man, Trump, mock the disabled reporter; they heard him talk about p#ssy grabbing on the bus and they voted for the man anyway. Meanwhile Democrats say "but Hillary was flawed!" 

Any One of a Dozen Things..

We can all point to any of a dozen things that made the difference in an election this close. It does no good to speculate on which of those things made the "most difference".

So....

A Good, Solid Liberal Progressive Agenda...

We need a good solid liberal agenda that a majority of the people in this country will agree with. And we need to fight against voter suppression so that that majority can actually get to the polls and VOTE.

I don't know how we win over racists and misogynists, the same people who have flocked to Trump. I don't know whether or not we should try to win over these people. I don't know how we win over people like coal miners who believed Trump's lies about reopening the coal mines.. Lies from the man who talked about assaulting women.  I would bet that most of these miners have wives, daughters, sisters.. but they didn't care that the man was a sexual predator; they didn't care that he lied continually; they really think that he is going to reopen coal mines. I don't know how we win over the uneducated white men, of whom 72% voted for Trump. Let's remember that these people have been lied to for decades now by Fox News, Rush Limbaugh, and they probably only read rightie blogs like Breitbart.  I honestly don't know if we can fight against ignorance and racism.  I don't know that it is worth the fight.     

Now the Democratic Senators...

All of the Democrats have to come together and figure out a way forward.. And we have to give our Democratic Congresspeople support to do whatever they can to block the Republican destruction of our country. I can't imagine what it is like to be one of the 48 Democatic Senators right now.  I hope they realize that they are all that stands between the majority of the people.. as more people voted for Hillary than Trump... and total chaos.

God bless all of them as they work to save the country from itself.

Trump Plus 8 Days and Nights


I have started about a dozen articles since Trump won the Electoral College last Tuesday.  I'd write and dump, write and dump some more, and then I just gave up.   None of those articles sounded very good, so I didn't publish anything.  

From Political Noodle



I have, however, been collecting links to great rants from websites, Facebook friends, people at the Kos, other people who (at least for now) are more articulate than I have been able to be.  I will post these links, about 4 or 5 at a time, over the next few days.

I will say that my emotions have been spiraling up, down, in, and out at an incredible pace.  I wake; I see the sun; I feel good; the holidays are coming.. and then I remember that Trump is the President-elect.  How can that be?  I'm still incredulous; still in a state of disbelief.  I feel as though I'm watching a sci-fi show about a parallel universe..  A universe in which the Germans won WWII, a topic with which many sci-fi shows have played.

But, no, this is now, 2016, and this is the United States of America.  And a reality television star, a man with no experience in government, a man who is crude, racist, and ignorant, is going to move into the White House.. well, at least part time.  President Pussy-grabber.  He's going to make the government of this country into a reality show.  He's going to make the whole world into a big reality show with him as the star.  Except it's really real, unlike most reality shows.  And the outcome just might be deadly.         

I feel better when I check in with my friends on Facebook.. There is comfort in numbers, but the misery, the fear, is everywhere.    

I will write nothing more for now, but the title of this blog, "Both Parties Are NOT The Same", has never been more apt.  After a few years of Trump, maybe we will no longer have to convince people that "Both Parties Are NOT the Same" because the difference will be so, so, so crystal clear.  

   

Monday, November 7, 2016

That's it, Folks!

Dear, dear friends.. I think I've just about had it. I can barely click a like on a Tweet tonight, nor can I even consider sharing one more article to my Facebook page. Maybe I'll feel differently tomorrow morning, but I feel as though I am all "electioned" out. So just a short rant before I check out for the night.. Or maybe for the next two nights!


I am so, so sick of crap like "Hillary is corrupt." I'm sick of Wikileaks. I'm sick of people who can't see the hypocrisy of Wikileaks.. Do they really think the internal communications of the Trump people.. or even the Bernie Sanders people... are that different? I'm tired of people who try to make mountains out of molehills due to incomplete emails. They publish stuff and I can't figure out how they got to A from B due to the words in that email.


I'm tired of people who are fact-challenged. If your only sources are Fox News, Breitbart, Gateway pundit, Rush Limbaugh, etc etc, you have no idea what the facts are. Speaking of "Truth", I'm convinced that any website that has "Truth" in the title is bullsh!t and needs to be taken with a grain of salt.  So ignore anything coming from a website that is named "Truth".  It likely isn't.

Finally, I'm tired of people who actually think that Trump would be a good President. He's a vile human being and the few policies that he has promoted are horrible. Privatizing the highway system? You really think that's a good idea?

So for now that's it. We have an easily brainwashed ignorant public, and politicians are allowed to lie with impunity. A dire combination.
I think Hillary will win, but it will be a very tough term for her and little will get done. But if she can keep the Republicans from enacting policies that increase income inequality and start wars and recessions, reduce Social Security, voucherize Medicare, privatize highways, well, that might be good enough.

Later, mates!
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