40-ish blend of the sacred and the profane un-easily co-existing in a drastically more compromised shell mourning the absence of my favorite muppet, Grover, from the latest movie... sniff.

Person #1779: 65 Posts

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  1. If you include... (0 Replies)

    The working class has been under attack for the past 50 years

    …minorities and females in this calculus, the working class has been under assault for far longer than 50 years…

    Or, put another way, the growth of the African-American middle class, as well as gains for women, were greatest over the past fifty years and this has contributed to a perceived dimunition of the power and influence of the (white) working class over that same time period.

    So what’s your problem?

  2. If you include... (0 Replies)

    The working class has been under attack for the past 50 years

    …minorities and females in this calculus, the working class has been under assault for far longer than 50 years…

  3. why not...? (0 Replies)

    His speaking value may be $400K. He still shouldn’t take gigs like this. It’s not hard.

    …Why not? What about this “gig” is wrong? Without explaining yourself further, all I’m left with is “Rich people bad! Harumph! Money evil! Argh!”

    You will, I hope, excuse me if I ask for something more… what’s the word..? something more substantial than that…

  4. And... (2 Replies)

    And the principle is that Obama is selling access to his persona – monetizing his popularity –

    … So too, is Yglesias, the author of the piece quoted above, whose motives are considered above reproach (if only because any such reproach would edge uncomfortably close to consistency) and yet he is, in essence, counselling Obama not to do something he’d likely do if his popularity could be made to reach such exalted heights.

    This is the strangeness of the world we live in: an ungainly, inelegant admixture of extreme and advanced intellectual parkour in service to an anti-intellectual bullying. First, made up science is used to denigrate actual science. Then, ‘alternative facts’, the form of an agreed upon reality, functions to both substitute for, and to attack, reality. And, now, Yglesias is paid for his speech in which he tells another not to get paid for his speech.

    We simultaneously revere the intellect… by providing a market whereby even a middling intellect such as Yglesias can make his living… but then denigrate it: Yglesias says “That’s so much cash, for so little work” in a bullying dismissal of the same sort of money for effort Yglesias employs to feed his face… If Barack Obama couldn’t demand 400K before he was President, then the 400K after represents the ‘little work’ he did for eight years dodging Mitch McConnell’s and his fellow troglodytes throwing feces and spitting venom, all while keeping the economy going, and the world on its axis, and doing what George Dubya couldn’t do; killing bin Laden.

    What is it that you want? Do you want an intellectual marketplace? Then Barack Obama and Matt Yglesias both deserve to get paid what they are worth. If you don’t want an intellectual marketplace then you can’t quote Yglesias to support your argument.

  5. See, now. You've exposed your hand... (2 Replies)

    I assume you’d object if the President became a lobbyist for the Taliban.

    …Speaking TO Wall Street is not speaking FOR Wall Street. Your analogy reveals more about what you think than anything else: you think speaking to is equivalent to speaking for…

    I certainly would not object to Barack Obama being dispatched upon a diplomatic mission to Afghanistan to speak TO the Taliban, which I think is a cleaner, though not entirely clean, analogy. If the Taliban invited him and offered him money, I would not object. The difference is that I do not equate that with lobbying.

    The optics aren’t bad: you, and others, refuse to see anything but what you want to see. That’s not a problem of the optics. That’s a problem of you.

  6. way to shift them goalposts, partner... (0 Replies)

    I would have helped the homeowners more than he banks during the recession recovery. I would have actively investigated and prosecuted members of the banking establishment. I would not accept a $400,000 “gift” from the banker after my retirement, not when so many Americans are without adequate wages and as our middle class continues to shrink…

    …critiques of past actions, which I may or may not agree with, are not germane to my statement made in the present tense about the present situation. Calling forth such critiques suggests an unfocused rage over past situations further suggesting that no present action on the part of Former President Obama would ‘scape the fusillade of your anger.

  7. Most of us were not POTUS, either... (2 Replies)

    f $400K is the market rate, most of us are priced out.(0+ / 0-) View voters

    That’s it in a nut shell. That’s what’s wrong with the Democratic Party as well. Well said.

    I’m perfectly happy being ‘priced out.’ I’ve never been POTUS. As noted earlier, If I ever find myself in Barack Obama’s position, I’d do nothing differently than he.

  8. Did you read the Vox piece...? (1 Reply)

    No one said Obama is being paid to be obsequious.

    … because Yglesias pretty clearly laid that out. It is the entire rationale for the piece and anybody who approvingly cites this piece, such as yourself are saying that Obama is being paid to be obsequious.

  9. It has been said... (0 Replies)

    The vast majority of Americans now think the Democratic Party is not “in touch with the concerns of most people in the United States”

    … that

    “Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it whether it exists or not, diagnosing it incorrectly, and applying the wrong remedy.”

    And this may be the case for the electorate as well as for the elected.

  10. If that's the case... (2 Replies)

    And the worst things about folks defending this saying he’s not President anymore is that is how the scam works. You take care of the business interests while you are in office and they take care of you afterwards – it’s a payback for “services” rendered.

    …then the answer is to repeal the 22nd amendment and let Barack Obama run for a third, and fourth, term and possibly beyond. He’s 55 years old. James Carter and George H.W. Bush are both 92. Bill Clinton is 70. Obama could legitimately be a player for the next 35 years or more.

    What is he supposed to do for those 35 years? Go on vacation, more or less, constantly?

    I don’t think the founding fathers envisioned a POTUS-emeritus, but that’s essentially what is happening. The suggestions of cupidity and/or ethical failures are just a petulant tantrum at the world.

  11. ... (2 Replies)

    My guess is that Cantor Fitzgerald would not mind if President Obama went to the podium and recited the Rime of the Ancient Mariner.

    With Barack Obama’s voice, and in his cadence… that might be quite a thing to hear. Why do you dismiss that as the least effort, least value thing that he could deliver?

    They are handing him $400,000.00 and they expect to get something in return in the future.

    The underlying thesis you posit is that, of course, Barack Obama will give them what they want.

    Why do you think so little of him?

    What they will get is what Barack Obama decides to give them. Everything I know about Barack Obama suggests to me that if they were to ask him to do something unethical he’ll tell them to go piss up a rope. Their money entitles them to sit down, STFU, listen to what he has to say and then ponder it in the privacy of their own thoughts.

  12. Obama isn't doing anything... (3 Replies)

    … I wouldn’t do in his position.

    People want to hear what he has to say, so he’s charging a fee to say it.

    Like Hillary Clinton, I’m not at all concerned that Obama will kowtow to the so-called elite, in fact I’m fairly convinced the price tag is an indication of the kowtowing going in the other direction. The so-called elites are the least secure peoples going.

    As well, in defiance of the unspoken notion most of you are peddling that Obama’s being paid to be obsequious, I think Barack Obama has the cajones to look ‘em in the eye, take their money and tell ‘em what’s what, straight, no chaser. Might be the only way they will have to sit and take it.

  13. I'll bite... (1 Reply)

    McCarthyism alive and well(0+ / 0-) View voters

    McCarthyism alive and well on blue mass group.

    What traction McCarthy had, derived from telling whoppers about a subject people took seriously: espionage and foreign intervention in the US government.

    Now, you want to hark back to the whoppers in order that we not take seriously the possibility of espionage and foreign intervention in the US government.

    Yeah, that’s about par for the course for somebody who’d defend Trump.

  14. Presumably... (0 Replies)

    No, thanks. I prefer to pick my Senator from the 167,000 folks who lived in the district prior to the good Senator’s unfortunate death.

    … the Chief of Staff to the late Senator from the District was, whatever her residency, working on behalf of Senators’ constituents right up until the moment of the Hon Senators demise, and likely beyond.

    I understand your staking your claim, on principle, against carpetbagging — and, on principle, I agree — but I don’t think it is a scruple that can be applied altogether fairly, in this instance.

  15. ... (0 Replies)

    platform: (Medieval French plate-forme diagram, map, literally, flat form) (1) : a usually raised horizontal flat surface; especially : a raised flooring (2) : a device or structure incorporating or providing a raised section;
    (3) : a place or opportunity for public discussion

    And what’s the point of a new Platform that will be equally ignored by those in power within the party?

    A platform is not a to-do list. A political party is not a governing body. Faulting a political party for failing to govern according to something that isn’t a to-do list seems like a roundabout way of decrying the messiness that is republican structures.

    Any political platform should be both aspirational and referential. You are using it in a referential form, but with a judgement attached: that of ‘what good is it if the reality doesn’t meet the rhetoric?” I don’t think that’s the way it is supposed to work. It is supposed to bem “We are here. We want to get there. What do we have to do to make that happen?”

    Or, put another way, instead of saying “why are the powers-that-be ignoring the platform” why don’t you ask why the Democratic voters-that-be put up with that from their Democratic representatives?

  16. And... (0 Replies)

    I tried to redevelop a building and simply getting a mortgage demanded putting in features that amounted to applying for a loan for 300% of the purchase price.

    … maybe the cost of renovation wasn’t artificially high, but the purchase price was artificially low??

    A lot of multi-family homes and other ‘apartment’ buildings went up really quickly in the post-war years and the opportunities for corner-cutting, in the context of much cruder building codes, were plentiful.

    Even if a building was entirely up to the existing code at construction, the addition of something like a fire fighting sprinkler system, which would certainly increase your plumbing budget by about 200%, since you have to add entirely separate systems, into a building that wasn’t conceived to ever hold more than one plumbing system, is gonna cost you.

    Sometimes, it’s actually cheaper to raze the building and start over.

  17. dwellings (1 Reply)

    Seriously, how does adding a sprinkler system TRIPLE the price of a dwelling?

    IIRC, the fire-sprinkler law is local-ordinance optional for multi-unit buildings (more than four apartments) and so the cost would be for the entire building…

    Though I find the 200% – 300% number somewhat suspect as a general guideline, still I can imagine some apartment buildings built long ago would incur significant costs under the necessity of a renovation requiring a new sprinkler system. I would still consider it a good investment since the buildings owner will get a break on insurance, get a safer space as well as not ever have to see his/her entire investment go up in smoke.

  18. Did we just... (1 Reply)

    Even President Trump’s Secretary of Defense, James Mattis, agrees. In January, Secretary Mattis said in written comments to the Senate Armed Services Committee: “I agree that the effects of a changing climate — such as increased maritime access to the Arctic, rising sea levels, desertification, among others — impact our security situation.”

    … sub-contract the environment to the military?

    If we’re taking money from the EPA, but giving even more money to the military, and the military agrees with the problem and will, likely, therefore put some of that aforementioned money into combatting, at the least, the effects of the problem…

    Seems less like we’re ignoring the problem and more like we’re resourcing it in the most bass-ackwards, not to say passive-aggresive, manner possible.

  19. you forget... (0 Replies)

    The Clinton stuff doesn’t wash for me. She portrays herself as more hawkish, but we don’t really know what her stance toward Russia would have been. She says Putin doesn’t like her — that is probably true, and if so it’s some motivation, but enough?

    … the order of the cart and the horse: Putin’s documented dislike of Clinton is easily traceable to Clinton’s tenure as Secretary of State where she was demonstrably more hawkish than Obama with respect to first Libya and then Syria. Putin couldn’t abide Obama and Clinton was, from Putin’s POV, far worse. Putin doesn’t like her… and with reason… she has demonstrated toughness and character in the job.

    I think the entire Russian project of electoral interference was conceived solely to add misery to Clinton’s life with the view that she would, ultimately, be elected POTUS, and this precisely because Putin knows how tough she can be. That it succeeded far beyond its intent is something nobody forsaw.

  20. What is it... (1 Reply)

    We shouldn’t annoint our nominees

    … that you think you mean by “annointed”???

    I think all our primaries should have as wide a field as possible.

    You are sooo full of it. Four people entered the Senate race in 2009: Martha Coakley, Mike Capuano, Alan Kazei and Steve Pagliuca. Only one emerged. What is your criteria for ‘annointed’? Do they have to run a gauntlet of greater than 4 people? Martha Coakley did SO WELL in 2009/2010 that she scared people away from the 2014 Gov Race. Is that what you consider ‘annointed”? Is Martha Coakley responsible for the cowardice of others?