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Mark Wheeler
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On Trumpcare...
thank goodness it died in the house.

Republicans go on and on about the disaster of ACA, but none of what they proposed fixed any of its problems in any way.
all they were interested in was cutting taxes for the rich.
The Republicans are the penultimate scammers.

But ultimately how did we get Krugman points out, a good deal of the blame falls on the media. Just because there are two different opinions doesn't make them equally valid...the media needs to look deeper and understand what the real impacts are and do a better job of discerning the spin from the facts.
All this time, there was no positive alternative for ACA put forth by the was all a trade of poor lives for rich constituent's dollars.
Some of the media fact checked all the candidates all along...but the mainstream media did not call them out enough...The NY Times has stepped up but a little late.

From Krugman:
_There’s an important lesson here, and it’s not just about health care or Mr. Ryan; it’s about the destructive effects of false symmetry in reporting at a time of vast asymmetry in reality.
This false symmetry — downplaying the awfulness of some candidates, vastly exaggerating the flaws of their opponents — isn’t the only reason America is in the mess it’s in. But it’s an important part of the story. And now we’re all about to pay the price._

You can argue that health care is not a right...but that's not what the american public believes or wants.

You can argue for minimalist government...but when you get down to details you find yourself on opposite side from the vast majority.

You can argue that the rich are overtaxed...but that's not born out by facts...and the media needs to call them out on that.
This whole republican repeal plan was simply a giant tax cut...and ironically would have hurt rural americans the most. For the republican leadership, all their actions are based on protecting the wealthy class...and that is a tough sell when the upper class is doing so well (relative to historical levels) and actually paying much lower taxes than the rest of the population.

Some interesting data which reveals how bad TrumpCare really was.

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crisis indeed...

He’s advised by his daughter, his son-in-law, and an oddball who once ran a white supremacist fake-news outlet.

His cabinet is an assortment of billionaires, CEOs, veterans of Wall Street, and ideologues, none of whom has any idea about how to govern and most of whom don’t believe in the laws their departments are in charge of implementing anyway.

He has downgraded or eviscerated groups responsible for giving presidents professional advice on foreign policy, foreign intelligence, economics, science, and domestic policy. He gets most of what he learns from television.

and Reich doesn't even mention all the evidence mounting on the Russian tentacles reaching into our government.

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Krugman on the Obamacare 0.5 bill from the Republicans...

it’s a half-baked plan that accepts the logic and broad outline of the Affordable Care Act while catastrophically weakening key provisions. If enacted, the bill would almost surely lead to a death spiral of soaring premiums and collapsing coverage.

First, the G.O.P.’s policy-making and policy analysis capacity has been downgraded to the point of worthlessness. There are real conservative policy experts, but the party doesn’t want them, perhaps because their very competence makes them ideologically unreliable

But the modern G.O.P. always wants to comfort the comfortable and afflict the afflicted; so the bill ends up throwing away the taxes on the rich that help pay for subsidies, and redirects the subsidies themselves away from those who need them to those who don’t.

you might ask what happened to all those proclamations that Obamacare was a terrible, no good system that Republicans would immediately replace with something far better

the answer, of course, is that they were all lying, all along — and they still are. On this, at least, Republican unity remains impressively intact.

Reverse Robin Hood indeed...

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From Krugman:

The point is that you can’t understand the mess we’re in without appreciating not just the potential corruption of the president, but the unmistakable corruption of his party — a party so intent on cutting taxes for the wealthy, deregulating banks and polluters and dismantling social programs that accepting foreign subversion is, apparently, a small price to pay. ...

Trump keeps saying he's for the common guy...but not one thing he has done will help them...all he's really done is to help wall street and big oil/coal indsutry. This will end badly.

The thing is, this nightmare could be ended by a handful of Republican legislators willing to make common cause with Democrats to demand the truth. And maybe there are enough people of conscience left in the G.O.P.

But there probably aren’t. And that’s a problem that’s even scarier than the Trump-Putin axis.

Their hypocrisy is clear now...can you imagine how batshit crazy the republicans would be if circumstances were turned around.
Lock them up.

Everything seems to be going well for Putin...he must be very proud of himself. If this plays out like it appears to be heading, Putin will become the richest man in the world.

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John Oliver has Trump figured out in this excellent piece.

Trump was telling the truth about his solutions to the problems he was lying about. He is now making real policy based on fake facts.

Where does Trump get his info, not just Fox news but he also takes information in from frighteningly unreliable sources such as Breitbart

Trump's trust of Breitbart goes way back now Trump sources get even worse because he also cited an article...from InfoWars...not just offensive...but stupid

InfoWars Alex Jones: It is surreal to talk about issues here on the air and then word for word hear Trump say it two days later.

Trump summed up by Oliver:
there is a pattern here. Trump sees something that jives with his world view, doesn't check it, half remembers it, and then passes it on, at which point it takes on a life of its own and appears to validate itself.

John points out the origin of the voter fraud claim...unsubstantiated crap from a twitter user picked up by InfoWars.

When he was presented with a lack of evidence, he disregarded that fact, at which point he is lying.
and it seems no one in the white house has a problem with that.

Real people get hurt when you make policy based on false information.

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"inherited a mess"...Trump is a complete joke.
unfit for office...

extremely poor transition planning, eschewing protocols, appointing people who don't know anything about the job they are doing, effectively putting all the adults outside the room.

either he is purposely lying or has no connection with reality...

nothing good can come from decisions based on information that is not based on reality.

he is a train wreck.

and most republicans continue to go along with credibility left.

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Andrew Sullivan calling out trump and his administration...and a call to the media to fight it:

Here is what we are supposed to do: rebut every single lie. Insist moreover that each lie is retracted — and journalists in press conferences should back up their colleagues with repeated follow-ups if Spicer tries to duck the plain truth. Do not allow them to move on to another question. Interviews with the president himself should not leave a lie alone; the interviewer should press and press and press until the lie is conceded.

he asks himself:
If you came across someone in your everyday life who repeatedly said fantastically and demonstrably untrue things, what would you think of him?

I'd be worried about the person if he were a friend...and I certainly wouldn't want him responsible for anything of importance.

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Reich pegs it:
Every day that goes by, Trump further disgraces the office he holds. His lack of respect for the presidency apparently knows no bounds.

the Bizarro World view:
Trump counselor Kellyanne Conway charges that media coverage of Donald Trump lacks “respect for and recognition of the dignity for the office of the president.”

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RIP Hans Rosling...this guy was great.

I met his son and daughter-in-law a few times when they were at Google...really loved what they were doing.

Above all Rosling was an advocate for a “fact-based worldview,” one which his family says they'll carry on at the foundation he started.

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Amazing finish for the Pats...Cool halftime show...but the
Kia Niro super bowl commercial starring Melissa McCarthy is the winner for us.
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