Friday, October 28, 2016

A bit early for this kind of talk?

It is well known that Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg loves opera. She used to attend regularly with colleague Antonin Scalia. And next month she will be in an opera!. For one night she’ll play royalty in “The Daughter of the Regiment” by Donizetti at Washington National Opera. In her role she will speak though not sing.

I’m not surprised, but isn’t this a bit early? The GOP will be extending all their investigations of Hillary Clinton into her presidency. Yeah, all those supposed “scandals” that have come up dry. Trying to wring more drops from these stones isn’t the “early” part. This is: There is already talk of impeachment. If the GOP maintains a constant state of investigation with talk of impeachment the corporate media will cover it, no matter how empty the claims. That will lead people to think maybe there is a fire under all that smoke.

Pardon me while I allow myself a moment of schadenfreud. It looks like a run for the presidency may finish off Donald Trump financially, even though he has used the campaign to put dollars in his pocket. (1) A big part of his income was the Trump brand, which he licensed. But that brand is now associated with horrendous bigotry. (2) He has repeatedly shown he’s in it only for himself, refusing to pay contractors and employees. Who will want to be his partner or lend him money? (3) His social status is gone. High society people now see him as a joke – and a creepy sexual predator. Inviting him to a party would kill the event. (4) He faces legal battles over Trump University and Trump Foundation. Jilted contractors may have more courage to challenge a wounded Trump.

His finances would be doing just fine (as would his assault on women) if he hadn’t run for prez. and exposed his life to scrutiny.

Very few states have laws about having guns in polling places. So Prince William County, Virginia is considering a one-day ban on weapons at polling places on private property. Poll workers in Colorado are being trained in how to respond to a mass shooting. All this while Trump suggests his followers “watch” (read: intimidate) voters in minority precincts.

We’ve been hearing how much Trump hates NAFTA and Clinton thinks the TPP didn’t come out right, so is worth opposing. If the TPP doesn’t pass, what might a progressive vision on trade deals look like? Mike Konczal of The Nation has some ideas.

* Trade deals should not interfere with a country’s ability to regulate international corporations.

* Strengthen the global labor movement to avoid a race to the bottom on how workers are treated.

* Prevent currency manipulation.

* US trade deficits will remain and not a big deal. That debt allows foreigners to invest in America. We can guide that investment into green infrastructure.

And a bit of fun. Stephen Colbert as Randy the Office Manager sits down with Prez. Obama to discuss how he might present himself when interviewing for the next job. I think Obama was a really good sport with a great sense of humor.

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