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Adamu Shauku
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Political Scientist
Political Scientist

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Put questions of race aside for just a moment and ask yourself whether the use of force was in any way justified against the 165-lb man who began with his hands clearly raised and was immediately placed in the firm physical control of 6 officers:

"Pinned to the ground by officers who kneed and struck him, Lawrence Crosby screamed whatever he could think of to convince them that he was a law-abiding PhD student, not a violent car thief.

'This is my vehicle, sir,' he said, his voice captured by the dashboard-camera video. 'I have evidence. . . . I purchased this vehicle Jan. 23, 2015, from Libertyville Chevrolet.'

It wasn’t enough. The officers placed him in handcuffs in the driveway of a church, two blocks from the police station in Evanston, Ill."

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/post-nation/wp/2017/01/14/video-shows-police-tackling-and-beating-a-black-man-suspected-of-stealing-a-car-it-was-his

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"The majority of these arguments did not explain why my choice was wrong. And after reading piece after piece of snarky, bitter commentary, I too lost the desire to engage...

The experience certainly made me wonder how many times I, too, may have been guilty of this kind of 'libersplaining.' It’s easy to feel smug when you are living in an echo chamber. But now I truly understand how damaging that echo chamber can be: not only does it not win arguments, let alone votes, but it drives away those who might otherwise have been willing to change their minds.
I suspect that the sudden popularity of the term populism has led to a similar lack of respect and curiosity for opinions we disapprove of. It may even betray a fundamental belief, inadvertent or explicit, that the populus is somehow lesser—less critical, less acute, and easier to sway.

But it is not. Liberals may be heavily represented in the media, the centers of culture (popular, and otherwise), and in academia. But unless we are able to start learning how to talk to people unlike us, we’ll likely keep losing."

https://qz.com/866727/filter-bubbles-and-facebok-why-so-many-people-hate-the-liberal-elite/

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"Republicans need a House majority, 50 Senate votes, and soon-to-be President Trump to pass repeal and delay.

If Republicans lose three Senate votes, that drops them to 49, and repeal and delay cannot pass. At least three Republican senators (in addition to all the Democrats) now oppose repeal and delay. Rand Paul, of all people, has demanded that Congress repeal Obamacare at the same time it passes a plan to replace it. Paul has announced that he spoke with Trump and secured his agreement on this. Trump has not said so himself, confining his comments to date to a vague assurance, 'That’s all gonna work out.'

Trump, of course, tends to change his mind frequently and agree with whomever he spoke with last. But other Republicans senators are taking the initiative. Fellow Republican Lamar Alexander says the same thing as Paul: 'We have to take each part of it and consider what it would take to create a new and better alternative and then begin to create that alternative and once it’s available to the American people, then we can finally repeal Obamacare.' Senator Tom Cotton of Arkansas said on MSNBC, 'It would not be the right path for us to repeal Obamacare without laying out a path forward.' And Senator Bob Corker is walking right up to the edge of the same position, asking Trump to tweet out confirmation of what Paul claims he promised. 'If it is his view, it would be really good if he would consider tweeting it out very clearly. There’s more and more concerns about not doing it simultaneously,' Corker says."

http://nymag.com/daily/intelligencer/2017/01/obamacare-repeal-might-have-just-died-tonight.html

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"A growing number of Senate Republicans are resisting the idea of repealing Obamacare without a concrete replacement proposal, complicating GOP plans to move swiftly to undo the health care law.

Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) started the open, intra-party dissension this week when the libertarian-leaning senator urged Republicans to vote on a replacement plan at the same time they pass a repeal bill. He was followed a day later by hard-line conservative Sen. Tom Cotton (R-Ark.), then by the more centrist Sen. Bob Corker (Tenn.).

And Paul said on Twitter late Friday that the most important Republican, President-elect Donald Trump, is fully on board, too.

'I just spoke to @realDonaldTrump and he fully supports my plan to replace Obamacare the same day we repeal it,' Paul wrote. 'The time to act is now.'"

http://www.politico.com/story/2017/01/gop-obamacare-repeal-replacement-resistance-233298?cmpid=sf

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"Republicans can certainly patch up the exchanges and keep them going during a transition period. All it would require is halting their relentless efforts to blow up the law and start trying to make it work. (“They want to pump money back in to the insurers without appearing like they’re giving them a handout or bailing them out,” one insurance lobbyist explains.) But if they do this, then they’ll have essentially proven that they can fix Obamacare. And if they can fix it, why would they let it expire? Especially when the deadline for the replacement approaches and, inevitably, Republicans have still failed to produce a replacement?

The most likely answer is that Republicans never craft a replacement. They repeal Obamacare, but delay the effective date of the repeal, and then Obamacare becomes a “cliff” that Congress votes to keep extending. There is no majority in Congress behind any one specific plan to replace Obamacare, but there is probably a majority against blowing it up immediately. That will likely become the new status quo. There’s no transition to a new plan. The transition is the plan. Or, at least, it will be.

Sahil Kapur reports that Republicans in Congress are contemplating a transition period that could last as long as four years. It is obviously ludicrous to rush to repeal the law while delaying the effective date of the repeal for four years. Arch-conservatives in Congress are already lobbying to move up the repeal date for this reason — but even if they succeed in phasing out Obamacare over two or three years rather than four, it just means that Congress will have to pass another extension. The most likely outcome is that Republicans keep extending the law until Democrats have the presidency again, at which point they’ll no longer have an incentive to prevent mass suffering, and can go back to opposing anything Democrats try to do to make the system work. Republicans just need to keep the system from collapsing on their watch.

If Republicans truly believed Obamacare creates more victims than beneficiaries, they would blow it up immediately. And if they really had an alternative that was more popular, they would wait to write it before they eliminated it. Repeal-and-delay proves that neither one of these is true. They have no better plan. All they can do is promise some better plan lies over a horizon that will never arrive.have no better plan. All they can do is promise some better plan lies over a horizon that will never arrive."

http://nymag.com/daily/intelligencer/2017/01/repeal-and-delay-is-forever.html

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“Once they take the oath and become a judge, they value the institution of the judiciary and want to preserve the rule of law,” she said. “We don’t know where the Trump administration will go, but we can put hope in judges who will put politics aside.”

Still, legal scholars predict Trump will test those limits. “He is certainly going to stretch the boundaries of executive power,” said Neal Devins, a law professor at the College of William and Mary who has written about the history of presidential power. “Every president seems to do that. They always claim they have the authority to pursue their policies. And given the rhetoric of his campaign, Trump may feel a need to act unilaterally to show he is a strong president.”

http://www.latimes.com/politics/la-na-presidential-power-trump-20161220-story.html

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"Still unknown, however, is where that money would come from, given Trump’s other plans to slash taxes while keeping many entitlement programs intact and also embarking on a $1 trillion infrastructure improvement program.

'I see big deficits in our future,' said long-time budget analyst Todd Harrison of the Center for Strategic and International Studies."

http://foreignpolicy.com/2016/11/17/military-experts-trump-defense-spending-plans-would-break-the-budget/

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“Trump’s deficiencies are well-known. But we need the best Trump we can get. As much as will be possible for him, we need him to do a competent, scandal-free job. That is in the interests of all Americans…

Opposition grounded in the differing values of the two parties is to be expected. That is what it means to be the people’s representatives. Opposition grounded in vengefulness and spite is a failure of leadership. Leaders help us to channel our impulses in productive ways.”

https://economicsandinstitutions.com/2016/11/14/principle-should-trump-spite/

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