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US politics: Donny, you're out of your element

401 posts in this topic

1 hour ago, Einheri said:

I dunno, mormont. Fake news or not… there is something called lying by omission, and the way I see it they showed us some outrageous bits from his videos without including their full context, which would explain to the viewer that it was meant to be comedic in nature, and not encourage anti-Semitism.

Again, the context doesn't really do that at all, so far as I can see. In particular, the context provides no information at all about why, specifically, an anti-Semitic message was chosen.

As for 'comedic nature', that would usually suggest something funny was happening.

1 hour ago, Einheri said:

Not doing so makes Felix look worse than he really is (according to his friends and other youtubers, who have posted videos about this, he is not a bad person who hold such views), and to make matters worse, the WSJ even went as far as to suggest that the apology he had posted about it afterwards was insincere and some sort of secret message to the far right without any real basis for this, so yeah, I’m not all that surprised that he is pissed off at them for this article.

That 'apology' was insincere. As I said, a sincere apology takes ownership of the mistake, rather than being a platform to attack others.

However, this isn't really a US Politics subject, other than the comparison to Milo. So I'll just say that I think that comparison is probably unfair but not completely without foundation.

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So, the choice of McMaster hasn't really been covered. It says a lot about the general incompetence of the administration's previous picks that I felt a great deal of relief reading about this guy. He really seems quite sane and capable of reflection on topics like misuse of power. Of course, that might get him fired in a Flynn second.

Questions for those in the know:

  1. Is there more to his story that would suggest why Trump would choose an anti-authoritarian general with a penchant for actually reading books?
  2. A lot of the worry re: the Trump administration has to do with their obvious intention of doing a power grab at some point, and a lot of that has to do with the pretext of national security. I don't know about the exact tasks and limitations of the NatSec advisor, but does a sane person in that role give any hope for a less megalomanical approach to abusing national security to increase the administration's authority?

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Not sure on 1 but from everything I've read, it's a good pick and a guy you'd want leading your NSC. So kudos to Trump for that.

As for 2, Trump is still the decision maker and he has other organizations that he can utilize to do what he wants to do including Congress and DHS. Can McMaster stop that? I doubt it. He can make his opinion known, he can compile all the evidence but ultimately it's up to Trump on what he wants to do and with Congress implicitly signing off on everything he does, he could still consolidate more power, especially in the face of National Security. 

Either way, McMaster seems like a solid pick and one that will add balance to those discussions when Bannon/Miller weigh in and given Flynn was his prior choice, we should all count our lucky stars someone (IC, DOJ, WH) leaked Flynn lying to the press.

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59 minutes ago, mormont said:

Again, the context doesn't really do that at all, so far as I can see. In particular, the context provides no information at all about why, specifically, an anti-Semitic message was chosen.

As for 'comedic nature', that would usually suggest something funny was happening.

Regarding the sign, I think people find it funny because it’s shock humor and because the whole situation itself was frankly bizarre (i.e. it has a huge ‘wtf factor’). I mean, he pays a couple of guys in India just 5$, and then they’re suddenly dancing around happily before they unroll a banner with an anti-Semitic message and a call to subscribe to one of the most hated channels on youtube (Keemstar). I guess it’s funnier to people who have been paying attention to these channels than outsiders so YMMW, but I think it’s clear that Felix's intended this to be funny..

Quote

That 'apology' was insincere. As I said, a sincere apology takes ownership of the mistake, rather than being a platform to attack others.

However, this isn't really a US Politics subject, other than the comparison to Milo. So I'll just say that I think that comparison is probably unfair but not completely without foundation.

IMO you can apologize for something you’ve done, and still criticize people for making you seem worse than you really are/painting an untrue picture of you. Edit: Felix was particularly upset with these scandalous/untrue headlines which exists only to generate clicks.

Edited by Einheri

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https://www.nytimes.com/2017/02/09/us/california-farmers-backed-trump-but-now-fear-losing-field-workers.html

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MERCED, Calif. — Jeff Marchini and others in the Central Valley here bet their farms on the election of Donald J. Trump. His message of reducing regulations and taxes appealed to this Republican stronghold, one of Mr. Trump’s strongest bases of support in the state.

As for his promises about cracking down on illegal immigrants, many assumed Mr. Trump’s pledges were mostly just talk. But two weeks into his administration, Mr. Trump has signed executive orders that have upended the country’s immigration laws. Now farmers here are deeply alarmed about what the new policies could mean for their workers, most of whom are unauthorized, and the businesses that depend on them.

So in other words, while Trump was going around making nasty little comments about undocumented immigrants, and even though you knew better, you had nothing to say cause “tax cuts!!!!”.

Now, why oh why, am I not feeling very sorry for you at this very moment?

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“Everything’s coming so quickly,” Mr. Marchini said. “We’re not loading people into buses or deporting them, that’s not happening yet.” As he looked out over a crew of workers bent over as they rifled through muddy leaves to find purple heads of radicchio, he said that as a businessman, Mr. Trump would know that farmers had invested millions of dollars into produce that is growing right now, and that not being able to pick and sell those crops would represent huge losses for the state economy. “I’m confident that he can grasp the magnitude and the anxiety of what’s happening now.”

Hey dude, you could have added your voice to the discussion, but you chose not to cause “tax cuts!!!”

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Mr. Trump’s immigration policies could transform California’s Central Valley, a stretch of lowlands that extends from Redding to Bakersfield. Approximately 70 percent of all farmworkers here are living in the United States illegally, according to researchers at University of California, Davis. The impact could reverberate throughout the valley’s precarious economy, where agriculture is by far the largest industry. With 6.5 million people living in the valley, the fields in this state bring in $35 billion a year and provide more of the nation’s food than any other state.

It would have been nice if somebody had spoke up and said, “now wait a minute, these people are critical to our economies.” But, nope “tax cuts!!!”.

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The consequences of a smaller immigrant work force would ripple not just through the orchards and dairies, but also to locally owned businesses, restaurants, schools and even seemingly unrelated industries, like the insurance market.

Once again, whenever, there is a discussion about the impact of immigrant labor on the wages of native workers, you have to keep in mind that these immigrants are not just suppliers of labor, but they are demanders of it too. There is a strong reason to suspect that our beloved partial equilibrium model of labor supply and demand may not be quite right.

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Many here feel vindicated by the election, and signs declaring “Vote to make America great again” still dot the highways. But in conversations with nearly a dozen farmers, most of whom voted for Mr. Trump, each acknowledged that they relied on workers who provided false documents. And if the administration were to weed out illegal workers, farmers say their businesses would be crippled.

But, but, “I gonna get tax cuts, that’s why I didn’t say anything. As to the rest of Trump’s policies and rhetoric, uh, what’s wrong with a little wishful thinking?”

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If you only have legal labor, certain parts of this industry and this region will not exist,” said Harold McClarty, a fourth-generation farmer in Kingsburg whose operation grows, packs and ships peaches, plums and grapes throughout the country. “If we sent all these people back, it would be a total disaster.”

You know, you could have spoke up before Trump got elected. But, you know, “tax cuts!!!”.

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Mr. McClarty is not just concerned about his business, but also about his work force, he said. Many of them have worked for him year-round for more than a decade, making at least $11 an hour. After immigration officials audited his employee records a few years ago, he was forced to let go of dozens of employees.

“These people had been working for us for a long time, and we depended on them.”

So you knew these people were hard working and were good citizens, but didn’t say anything cause “tax cuts!!”.
 

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Many growers here and across the country are hopeful that the new administration will expand and simplify H-2A visas, which allow them to bring in temporary workers from other countries for agricultural jobs. California farmers have increasingly come to rely on the program in the last few years.

So, it’s just all about you and no one else. Nice. Ayn Rand would be proud.

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“It doesn’t matter if it’s programming computers or picking in fields,” he said, “Any time you’re admitting substitutes for American labor you depress wages and working conditions and deter Americans.”

You know if this were in fact the case, I know I would strongly consider this factor. But, there is a growing body of evidence that immigrant labor doesn’t affect American wages all that much. And if immigrant labor did have a strong impact on American wages, it’s still no excuse to let the nastiness towards these people slide.

There are probably better ways to go about protecting American workers, like say boosting minimum wage, then all this anti-immigrant stuff. But, you know the “tax cuts!!!” crowd doesn’t seem to be interested.

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The prospect has business owners in the valley on edge. Patricia Pantoj runs a travel agency in Madera, north of Fresno, where the city’s approximately 60,000 residents are predominantly Latino and work in the fields. This year, she said, fewer people than ever before traveled back to their hometowns in Mexico.

Once again, immigrants are also demanders of native born labor.

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In Ceres, north of Merced, the public school district is the largest employer by a large number, and many of the jobs were created to support the children of immigrants. Administrators say any crackdown would result in huge job losses and would reduce funding, which is distributed by the state based on need, for all the children in the district.

Most of the workers in Mr. McClarty’s vineyards and orchards have well-established lives in the area.

These people have become important to their communities and it’s nonsense to throw them out. And it would have been nice if some people would have said something, before Trump got elected, but you know, “tax cuts!!!”.

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“We’re just waiting and praying, hoping that somebody can convince them that we are not hurting anyone by being here,” said Isabel Rios, 49, who has been picking grapes for the last two decades. Like most women in the fields, she covers her face with a bandanna to protect against the blaring sun, dust and pesticides. Her two children, 9 and 18, are American-born citizens and she worries what will happen to them if she is sent back to Mexico. “Who will benefit if we are not here?”

She’s 49 and doing some really hard and gritty work. At this time, I’d ask Republicans to please stand up and start talking about “makers and takers” and the “47%”. Don’t be shy Republican Party. Please share your "conservative values".

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It was the other conservatives, Mr. Marchini said, who were out of touch about how to deal with foreign workers. “If you find a way to get in here,” he said, “there’s a need for what you do.”

Okay, Mr. Marchini, but it seems to me, you had a choice, to make. Either say something about Trump’s rhetoric and the rhetoric of the alt right or hope for “tax cuts!!!” and I think we all know what choice you made.

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1 hour ago, denstorebog said:

So, the choice of McMaster hasn't really been covered. It says a lot about the general incompetence of the administration's previous picks that I felt a great deal of relief reading about this guy. He really seems quite sane and capable of reflection on topics like misuse of power. Of course, that might get him fired in a Flynn second.

Questions for those in the know:

  1. Is there more to his story that would suggest why Trump would choose an anti-authoritarian general with a penchant for actually reading books?
  2. A lot of the worry re: the Trump administration has to do with their obvious intention of doing a power grab at some point, and a lot of that has to do with the pretext of national security. I don't know about the exact tasks and limitations of the NatSec advisor, but does a sane person in that role give any hope for a less megalomanical approach to abusing national security to increase the administration's authority?

Most of Trump's foreign policy and military appointments and staff, with the very notable exceptions of Bannon/Miller and their staff, are connected to Robert Gates and/or the consulting firm he started with Condoleezza Rice and Stephen Hadley. Even those that never worked in government before, like Tillerson, are connected. McMaster was consistently blocked for promotion to general until Gates, who was Sec. Def. at the time, stepped in and overruled McMaster's superiors (Petraeus was also involved in ensuring the promotion happened).

I'm not sure how Gates got so much influence with Trump, but all in all I consider this a good thing. Hopefully his people can present a united front against Bannon/Miller and eventually force them out.

ETA: Flynn was not connected to Gates either; so this appointment means Gates is continuing to gain influence.

Edited by Fez

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@OldGimletEye better get ready to pay more for your produce and meat.   The farmers will get their tax cuts but that won't cover their losses.  And if the tax cuts trickle down to the rest of us,  that won't cover our inflated costs either.  But tax cuts!!!!  Yeah dopes, sell your soul for a tax cut. 

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1 hour ago, Mexal said:

Not sure on 1 but from everything I've read, it's a good pick and a guy you'd want leading your NSC. So kudos to Trump for that.

As for 2, Trump is still the decision maker and he has other organizations that he can utilize to do what he wants to do including Congress and DHS. Can McMaster stop that? I doubt it. He can make his opinion known, he can compile all the evidence but ultimately it's up to Trump on what he wants to do and with Congress implicitly signing off on everything he does, he could still consolidate more power, especially in the face of National Security. 

Either way, McMaster seems like a solid pick and one that will add balance to those discussions when Bannon/Miller weigh in and given Flynn was his prior choice, we should all count our lucky stars someone (IC, DOJ, WH) leaked Flynn lying to the press.

I'm still trying to learn up on this here, but somehow I feel like anyone signing on at this point has to be agreeing to accepting Bannon and Miller and the others and not making waves by trying to change any previous staffing or decisions.

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5 minutes ago, Jaxom 1974 said:

I'm still trying to learn up on this here, but somehow I feel like anyone signing on at this point has to be agreeing to accepting Bannon and Miller and the others and not making waves by trying to change any previous staffing or decisions.

I thought the same thing until he picked McMaster, who has a history of making waves and questioning issues. So we'll see I guess.

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10 minutes ago, Jaxom 1974 said:

I'm still trying to learn up on this here, but somehow I feel like anyone signing on at this point has to be agreeing to accepting Bannon and Miller and the others and not making waves by trying to change any previous staffing or decisions.

We'll see. I suspect there's no completely getting rid of Bannon and Miller (nor should Trump necessarily, they are political advisors and they did just help win him the Presidency); but I'll be looking to see if McMasters can get them removed from the NSC, which they have no business being on in the first place.

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2 hours ago, Einheri said:

Regarding the sign, I think people find it funny because it’s shock humor and because the whole situation itself was frankly bizarre (i.e. it has a huge ‘wtf factor’). I mean, he pays a couple of guys in India just 5$, and then they’re suddenly dancing around happily before they unroll a banner with an anti-Semitic message and a call to subscribe to one of the most hated channels on youtube (Keemstar). I guess it’s funnier to people who have been paying attention to these channels than outsiders so YMMW, but I think it’s clear that Felix's intended this to be funny..

Shock humor is intended to offend. Some people find it humorous and some do not. Many didn't and found the 'jokes' to lack humor and to be in poor taste (to put it lightly). That does not afford Felix carte blanche nor does it allow any comedian/pseudo-comedian to make antisemitic/xenophobic jokes/comments/sketches without the risk of backfire. The whole point is to offend, so it beggars belief that backlash would somehow be inappropriate or surprising.

This bears repeating even though it has been posted twice:

"His problem is one of careless privilege, like so many other nihilistic, lulz-driven trolls. Kjellberg doesn’t have to face the social consequences of his actions personally, so he likely sees little harm in doing them"

http://birthmoviesdeath.com/2017/02/20/pewdiepie-rookie-comedian-quit-whining-and-write-some-damn-jokes

2 hours ago, Einheri said:

IMO you can apologize for something you’ve done, and still criticize people for making you seem worse than you really are/painting an untrue picture of you. Edit: Felix was particularly upset with these scandalous/untrue headlines which exists only to generate clicks.

His online existence is only to generate clicks. I lack sympathy for him at this point. He'll be fine. When you are speaking publicly (youtube included), you have a responsibility for the words you say - even more so when you have a large, dedicated audience. He has every right to say them and everyone else has every right to call him on it and his weak 'apology'.

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From what I'm seeing, sounds like the new DHS memos basically makes it so that anyone who's in the country illegally is eligible for deportation. So it seems clear that Trump is going for all 11 million. Where they get the funds and how much that destroys our community and economy is yet to be seen.

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1 minute ago, Mexal said:

From what I'm seeing, sounds like the new DHS memos basically makes it so that anyone who's in the country illegally is eligible for deportation. So it seems clear that Trump is going for all 11 million. Where they get the funds and how much that destroys our community and economy is yet to be seen.

But, hey, you know "tax cuts!!!!!"

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12 hours ago, Altherion said:

How is this different from what I said? It is illegal to discriminate against anyone with authorization to work in the US, but it is also illegal not to discriminate against anyone whose immigration status does not allow for employment.

It's different because you said that it isn't illegal  to discriminate based on immigration status, and that's incorrect. Now, what you might have meant is that it is not illegal to discriminate against people who do not have legal work status, but that also isn't correct; you simply can only ask them whether or not they can provide proof that they can legally work in the US. You aren't allowed to ask about their immigration status, their documentation, their history, etc.

12 hours ago, Altherion said:

A crisis can be an opportunity, but this generally works better for those in charge when there is no way to link them to its origins. If there is any way to even vaguely trace such a thing back to the administration, I guarantee you the media will make the most of it.

So? You say that like it actually matters.

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3 hours ago, denstorebog said:

So, the choice of McMaster hasn't really been covered. It says a lot about the general incompetence of the administration's previous picks that I felt a great deal of relief reading about this guy. He really seems quite sane and capable of reflection on topics like misuse of power. Of course, that might get him fired in a Flynn second.

Questions for those in the know:

  1. Is there more to his story that would suggest why Trump would choose an anti-authoritarian general with a penchant for actually reading books?

The biggest reason is that McMaster is on active duty and thus had two options when being offered the post: take the job, or resign from the military. He chose the former. It doesn't speak to a lot of greatness - he won't be able to pick his own staff, and that will cause issues. 

3 hours ago, denstorebog said:
  1. A lot of the worry re: the Trump administration has to do with their obvious intention of doing a power grab at some point, and a lot of that has to do with the pretext of national security. I don't know about the exact tasks and limitations of the NatSec advisor, but does a sane person in that role give any hope for a less megalomanical approach to abusing national security to increase the administration's authority?

It's good news, I guess, in that it's one less person that will likely be facilitating things, and it's one less person that has explicit ties to Russian interests. Beyond that, however, there isn't a ton of active power as the NSC typically. One reason that there might be more, here, is that the NSC attends meetings when the POTUS doesn't, and has daily access to advise the POTUS - something that has been shown to be a good influencer on Trump. 

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3 minutes ago, Kalbear said:

The biggest reason is that McMaster is on active duty and thus had two options when being offered the post: take the job, or resign from the military. He chose the former. It doesn't speak to a lot of greatness - he won't be able to pick his own staff, and that will cause issues. 

Is it true he won't be able to pick his own staff? I read the opposite.

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1 minute ago, Mexal said:

Is it true he won't be able to pick his own staff? I read the opposite.

The White House has said he would, but I guess there's a difference between official and actual truth.

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I too have read the opposite, but the proof is in the pudding -- in particular, I think we'll see where  K.T. McFarland goes, if anywhere.

 

Also, there's no evidence that he was told he'd have to resign if he didn't want the job -- that was offered up speculatively in sources I've seen. OTOH, being still on active duty, he may have felt obliged to say yes regardless of his personal feelings or any inducements offered.

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1 minute ago, Ran said:

I too have read the opposite, but the proof is in the pudding -- in particular, I think we'll see where  K.T. McFarland goes, if anywhere.

Yeah, I'm very suspicious that he effectively can.

1 minute ago, Ran said:

Also, there's no evidence that he was told he'd have to resign if he didn't want the job -- that was offered up speculatively in sources I've seen. OTOH, being still on active duty, he may have felt obliged to say yes regardless of his personal feelings or any inducements offered.

My understanding is that your career is effectively over if the CiC asks you to do something as an active duty member and you refuse. I could be wrong though. Per the Guardian's source, he didn't have nearly the leverage that someone who is retired does.

Quote

“I don’t know if there were any conditions attached or not, but someone serving in uniform obviously has less leverage over a president than a retiree who can say no and get on with his life,” said Mansoor, a retired army colonel who teaches military history at the Ohio State University.

 

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