About TRP

The Rational Progressive is a publication focused on progressive news and issues. Focused forward and focused on the facts, we avoid demons and demagogues.



by James Andre

  • The fight against the Right is over. The Left lost.

    The Guardian just out with a story connecting Trump's Chief Strategist Steve Bannon, Billionaire Robert Mercer, and the Brexit campaign that is severing England from the EU. This is a frightening, but not surprising, story that adds to a growing list of facts that demonstrate the existence and operation of a shrinking number of geopolitical players whose power is growing… Read more… 

  • Trump raised more money from small donors than Clinton and Sanders combined. America has a problem.

      The Campaign Finance Institute just released an analysis of FEC filings for the 2016 election. You may remember Bernie Sanders bragging about the money he was raking in from small donors at an average of $27 each. Well, Hillary Clinton beat him in small donations. And Trump beat them both - combined. Not only did Trump raise more small… Read more… 

  • Think About This – Monday 8/8/16

    Here are a few things to think about this week when you are talking politics and policy: • The world grows more peaceful and prosperous everyday. Violence and warfare have been declining since World War II. • Respect for civil and human rights in the U.S. is growing greater every day. More police are wearing cameras, and more are being… Read more… 

  • Haters, Whine All You Want. Hillary’s Nomination Is Unprecedented.

    I just wanted to write a quick note to Hillary supporters with some info for when you hear haters complaining that Hillary is not the first woman to run for president. That is true, however:   • The Clinton campaign is not making that claim. Maybe some in the media have. • Hillary is the first woman to win the… Read more… 


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Progressivism

Progressivism is not an ideology at all, but an attitude towards the world of politics that is far less black-and-white than conservatism or liberalism, breaking free from the false and divisive dichotomy of liberal vs. conservative that has dominated American politics for too long.

Progressives aren't simply liberals; progressives see the world for what it is, accept it as ever-changing and dynamic, and choose the best course of action in line with decidedly American values.

-From an article on Alternet.org by Andrew Garib

tweets


.@HillaryClinton urges women to be resilient in the face of sexism and misogyny.

Extended interview: https://t.co/3HLT3h4Jsf

Hillary had no need of illegit help in debates. Was chalking Brazile's cheating up to passion. Now it appears it was just low character.

Get the vote put for a sensible choice and restore stability in our country! #DougJonesforSenate https://t.co/4Nv1agHZOl

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The fight against the Right is over. The Left lost.

US billionaire Robert Mercer

The Guardian just out with a story connecting Trump’s Chief Strategist Steve Bannon, Billionaire Robert Mercer, and the Brexit campaign that is severing England from the EU.

This is a frightening, but not surprising, story that adds to a growing list of facts that demonstrate the existence and operation of a shrinking number of geopolitical players whose power is growing exponentially. Almost to a man, these players are well known for their fascistic and egocentric tendencies.

If there is one point I could drive home to the fractious middle and left, it is this: for all intents and purposes, the rapacity of the Right has taken over. They have won. Their independence and depth of control over events in the world is unparalleled.

That is why I say time and again we have no time and should have no tolerance for purity tests. We must vote for the best outcomes, not the best personalities. Otherwise we are literally lining ourselves up in front of the firing squad.

In 2016 the best choice was Hillary Clinton. Even if you think she is another of this type of self-interested corporatist, we know from her actions that our outcomes with her would have been better. At this point that is all that matters.

NEVER vote for the guy that tells you you can play a rigged game and beat the house. For fuck’s sake take a look around. Casinos and state lotteries explicitly explain the terrible odds and they take in billions. Trump did the same thing.

Betting on revolution against a house that controls the guns, fuel, food, and water is about the most asinine and useless thing you can do. It is no longer 1776 or 1861. Today’s despots have private jets and boots on the ground.


 

 

 

Maybe Trump thinks no one can see him?

Seems like a good time for a recap of Trump activity. Read to the end because trust me it gets incredibly bad:
 
1] Trump blows Comey kisses, praising him for his help in Trump taking the White House
 
2] Despite continuing questionable(but not negligent or illegal)statements from Comey, Trump says he still has confidence in him.
 
3] Trump has a phone conversation with Putin
 
4] Trump asks senior officials to come up with a rationale for firing Comey
 
5] Comey asks for more resources for his investigation of Trump
 
6] Trump fires Comey
 
7] Trump has a meeting with high ranking foreign officials in the Oval Office. He allows Russian state media in, but not U.S. media.
 
Then there is this:
 
Former national security advisor Colin Kahl, asks on twitter whether it was “a good idea to let a Russian gov photographer & all their equipment into the Oval Office?”
 
Kahl went on to say that when he worked for Barack Obama’s administration, he “couldn’t let foreign delegations bring phones/cameras” into his own office in the Eisenhower Executive Office Building, and that he had to leave his own phone and camera outside the Oval Office when he worked there.
 
And this:
 
The chummy White House visit had been one of Putin’s asks in his recent phone call with Trump, And indeed the White House acknowledged this to me later Wednesday. “He chose to receive him because Putin asked him to,” a White House spokesman said of Trump’s Lavrov meeting. “Putin did specifically ask on the call when they last talked.”[Politico]

Former Deputy Director of CIA and Under Secretary of the Treasury for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence David Cohen tweeted in reply, “No, it was not.”

 
Later in the day, White House spokespersons spread the message that “it is time to move on” from the Russia/Trump investigation.

Trump complains about media again

In a midday news conference, the President complained about “dishonest media”, saying he was coming “directly to the American people” because “many of our nation’s reporters and folks will not tell you the truth.”

The President went on to complain that the multitude of reports of turmoil in the White House, and questionable interactions with Russia during the election campaign, were “trying to attack our administration because they know we are following through on pledges that we made, and they are not happy about it.”

Trump went on to boast that his approval rating was 55% and rising, when multiple polls in fact show it sliding lower from the mid 40’s.

“In each of these actions I’m keeping my promises to the American people. These are campaign promises,” Trump said. He said the steps he’s taken in the four weeks since he was sworn in should surprise nobody, especially in the media.

“In other words, the media is trying to attack our administration because they know we are following through on pledges that we made, and they are not happy about it, for whatever reason,” he said. “But a lot of people are happy about it.”

Source: Trump complains that he ‘inherited a mess’ in rant against media – POLITICO

Trump complains about Flynn leaks, still no statement on Russian provocations

During a mid-week joint news conference with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Trump complained that the leaks were an attempt to “cover up for a terrible loss that the Democrats had”, and that “It’s a criminal act.”

Trump has called reports about now-resigned National Security Advisor Flynn’s conversations with Russian officials the work of “fake media”, but when Press Secretary Spicer was asked what was fake about the reports, his response was  “I’ll get back to you on that.”

The new Trump administration has been under a cloud since the election campaign because of its connections to Russia, specifically an unusual amount of communication between a presidential campaign and Russian officials, and Trump’s unwillingness to clarify his relationship with Russia or Vladimir Putin, or even criticize him, going so as to imply that the United States is as equally guilty of transgressions, including murder, as Putin. An unusual position for a President of the United States.

Questions about Trump’s relationship with Russia and potential blackmail materials Russian intelligence services may have on Trump grow each day, as the White House has made no statements about the administration’s relationship or contacts with Russia, and an even bigger concern, no statement about recent Russian military provocations.

There have been two proximity incidents between Russian aircraft and U.S. forces in the past week. A Russian intelligence gathering is currently cruising the east coast of the United States. And the President’s National Security Advisor was forced out after not being forthcoming about his communications with Russian officials.

The administration’s only comments have been that Flynn was treated unfairly by the media, and to call intelligence leaks that led to Flynn’s resignation “criminal”. The President tweeted about the leaks “One last shot at me. Are we living in Nazi Germany?”

As the White House has shown no inclination even under these circumstances to shed light on their relationships with Russian officials, or to even criticize, or question, anything the Russians do, even when provoking the U.S. military, it seems that questions about the Trump administration and Russia will continue.

Chaffetz asks for investigation over Flynn

House Oversight Chairman Jason Chaffetz on Tuesday said there was no need to investigate former National Security Advisor Flynn’s conversations with Russian officials because the situation was “working itself out.” On Wednesday, Chaffetz sent a letter to the Inspector General of the Department of Justice requesting “an immediate investigation” not into Flynn’s conversations, but into suspected mishandling of classified information as evidenced by public leaks about Flynn’s conversations and administration discussions about the matter.

The U.S. representative for Utah, Chaffetz may be best known for the interminable investigation into Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server, and for admitting without apology that he “absolutely” voted to cut funding for the U.S. embassy in Benghazi – the statement about cutting funding coming while investigating Clinton’s role in the Benghazi attack which occurred under her tenure as Secretary of State.

After becoming House Oversight Chairman, Chaffetz called potential investigations into Hillary Clinton a “target rich environment” promising that “we’ve got two years’ worth of material already lined up.” He later tweeted his support for then candidate Trump, also stating “HRC is bad for the USA”.

Chaffetz’s investigations turned up no evidence of illegalities, and were subsequently dropped after Clinton’s loss in the 2016 election.

Hours before resigning from the Trump administration, Flynn criticized the leaks, saying “You call them leaks. It’s a criminal act. This is a crime.”

Each new administration in the White House brings their own staff and appointees. Incoming presidents can replace many of the heads and top positions in most organizations, but the majority of employees of any agency, including intelligence services, are career employees, working through multiple administrations. It is impossible to replace everyone without crippling the organizations and swamping a new administration, preventing them from focusing effort on their agenda.

The new administration seems to be coming face-to-face with the harsh reality of Washington: you can’t change the culture overnight, and loyalties stretch far beyond any one presidential term. We are getting a demonstration of what you get when you elect an anti-establishment candidate: Washington will not be ‘torn down’, and the result will ultimately be a chaotic administration.

Price tag for border wall estimated at $21.6 billion

A Donald Trump for President campaign sticker is shown attached to a U.S. Customs sign hanging on the border fence between Mexico and the United States near Calexico, California, U.S. February 8, 2017. Picture taken February 8, 2017. REUTERS/Mike Blake

Reuters reports on in internal Homeland Security review of the costs and timeline for building a wall on the U.S./Mexico border. DHS estimates the cost at over $21B and the project to take between three to four years.

Of course, these numbers far exceed the optimistic projections that have been stated up to this point, and Mexico has made it clear that they have no intention of paying for the wall.

It is odd that Republicans, notorious for their lack of confidence in the government’s ability to manage large-scale projects for some reason feel that this project will somehow come in under budget and under schedule.  Large scale projects like this, either in the public or private sector, typically require several years of planning alone. While building a wall seems a simple prospect, site surveys and logistics alone for a project that covers such a large area requires a great deal of planning.

The current DHS report is a plan for 1250 miles of wall to be completed sometime in 2020.

Source: http://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-trump-immigration-wall-exclusive-idUSKBN15O2ZN

The State of The Democratic Primary 3/16/2016

Hillary Clinton had a great night on Tuesday, winning all the biggest states, and splitting Missouri, winning the popular vote and losing by one delegate.

The results add up to a statistically insurmountable lead that should carry her all the way to the nomination. I have been saying since Bernie got in that he would not be able to get the numbers he needed to overcome Clinton’s built-in support, and that certainly appears to be the case.

That seems to leave the one option with the highest chance of success that I suggested to his supporters months ago: start sending interstellar signals to attract attention from any intelligent aliens. Because the only real chance Bernie ever had was if 40% of Clinton supporters nationally were abducted by aliens.

primary results 3-15

 

I’m joking, but not about the numbers. there are 2,308 delegates remaining to be had. (*Clinton picked up 7 as this was written. Delegate counts will be fluid for a while) Hillary has 1,606 pledged and unpledged delegates meaning she needs 702 of the remaining 2,308. Bernie needs 1,457. That means Clinton only needs an average win in remaining contests of 31% to clinch the nomination.

As I have been saying to Bernie supporters for six months – it’s just the math.

Obama schooled Clinton on the process to take the White House in 2008, and then he proceeded to school Republicans on process. His final lesson will be the appointment of judges, including a Supreme Court justice, at the end of his term.

Clinton was always a process person, and now she has learned from Obama, and she is in the process of schooling Bernie, who hasn’t given a thought to process a day in his life.

It is past time for the idealists and the extremists in this country to understand that government is about process, not big ideas. Grand principles set the goals. Process does the work. When you go to the voting booth, this November or any time, we will all be well served if you remember the top qualifications for any candidate for elected office are that they understand the job, understand the process, and understand what it takes to keep the process moving closer to their agenda.

The process of government is a giant Golberg machine that often requires counter-intuitive and seemingly inconsequential maneuvers that lead to unexpected and out-sized results. Ironically, it requires exactly the kind of vision and technique to which populism is an anathema.

Which is why it is so hard to get things done.

rube-goldberg-machine


 

After Nevada, the Threats from the “Bernie or Bust” Crowd Grow Louder

There truly is a brand of young political idealist — and that’s the nice way of referring to it — which is wielding its vote, or lack thereof, as a weapon to hopefully get Bernie Sanders elected. These are the people who threaten to stay home on election day, so to speak, and who insist that that very boycott will be what costs the Democrats the White House and puts the highest office in the free world in the hands of somebody like Donald Trump. Their arithmetic goes something like this: Democrats say that a Republican win in 2016 is unacceptable, given who the candidates are and what they believe, and that any and all necessary steps must be taken to prevent it; Hillary Clinton can’t win against the Republicans without the support of Bernie Sanders supporters in the general election; Bernie Sanders supporters will not vote for Hillary Clinton if she wins the nomination, no matter what; therefore, abandoning Hillary Clinton and supporting Bernie Sanders as the Democratic nominee is the only alternative to preventing a GOP victory. See? Give us what we want and no one gets hurt. Simple as that.

Except that this is the same kind of political hostage-taking the Republicans currently in Congress have become pariahs for engaging in. When the GOP has in the recent past threatened to allow the government to go into default because it doesn’t have the votes or the power to get what it wants through the proper channels, wise people have looked for the nearest brick to throw at its representatives. Now, if these Sanders acolytes are to be believed, the ostensible other end of the political spectrum is trying to pull the same crap: threaten to burn the country down because they can’t get what they want any other way. Like all forms of political terrorism, if you give in to this nonsense it’ll just embolden the next fringe group that can’t see its demands met by putting it to a vote. And that’s really the problem here: these pouty, endlessly spoiled little assholes apparently can’t understand that in this country it all comes down to a vote and if their guy doesn’t get enough of them, he doesn’t win. Simple as that.

Read Full Article => After Nevada, the Threats from the “Bernie or Bust” Crowd Grow Louder – The Daily Banter


 

Dear Bernie: I Like You, But These Red Flags Are Too Frequent to Ignore

The problem is that you’re talking to people who sense that something is wrong, are angry about it and want to know where to place the blame. You are giving them a cabal of boogeyman bankers, corporations and allegedly bought politicians to bear the brunt of that resentment. You’re doing this through a fair degree of dishonesty, and the response of your supporters and campaign to any kind of reality check has thus far been to impugn the motives of impartial observers.

Bernie — do you mind if I call you Bernie? That’s bullshit, Bernie.

Senator, you are forming a mob of angry, misinformed people and then turning it on the likely Democratic nominee. That, Senator, is a dangerous and destructive game. Does your campaign honestly wonder why it has become synonymous with nasty online invective? If you mention the Bernie Bros online, fifty people fitting the profile pop up with abusive comments informing you that they don’t exist. On the eve of the Nevada caucus, one of your supporters attempted to place an obituary for Secretary Clinton in the Las Vegas Sun-Journal. Don’t you think this all might have a little something to do with your “me against the corrupt establishment” bluster?

It is a bitter irony, then, that Paul Krugman, Barney Frank, Gary Gensler, Jared Bernstein and Felicia Wong and Mike Konczal of the Roosevelt Institute all agree that Clinton’s plans to rein in Wall Street have more teeth than yours.

Meanwhile, anyone hoping to back up your claims will almost certainly be directed to your surrogate Robert Reich–whosewebsite currently sports thirty-nine “above fold” links to purchase books targeted at leftist consumers. Your campaign is built on questioning the motives of the people who aren’t trying to sell your supporters anything, Senator, while simultaneously directing them toward someone who is.

Read Full Article=> Dear Bernie: I Like You, But These Red Flags Are Too Frequent to Ignore


 

Bernie Versus The World

DEM_2016_Sanders-02782
A common criticism of Bernie that I and others have made is that there is no chance for him to get his plans through Congress. A common retort I hear from Bernie supporters is ‘well, how would Hillary get her plans passed?’ Leaving aside the overarching fallacy of equivalence that Bernie and Hillary would face the same quality of opposition for diverse proposals, there is a fundamental mistake in the thinking that Hillary would face similar difficulty in advancing her agenda.
An ‘outsider’ like Bernie will be and has been eaten alive. He’s the ranking Democrat on the budget committee, and it took Boehner quitting to get a budget passed. We need the establishment to beat the establishment – Hillary.
 
Another mistake Bernie supporters make – it is not only about Congress. Government is not working right now. Instead of just admitting that fact, Bernie supporters talk about some imaginary populist wave that everyone knows is not coming. We already learned that. Stop being racists and pretending like Obama is not popular and his presidency does not exist, and that somehow Bernie will be better at everything, even race relations!
 
Obama has been successful using public/private partnerships and executive actions. He has been able to gain financial and political support from private corporations and institutions to advance the progressive agenda, and at times pressure Congress to move legislation and appointments.
 
Bernie says Obama is weak. A disappointment. He doesn’t want to do things Obama’s way. He wants to fight corporations, fight Wall street, fight banks. He doesn’t want to get their cooperation, he wants to go to war with them. He threatens them and calls them names – criminals, greedy, fraudsters.
 
Congressional Democrats have said that some of Bernie’s plans they will not support. So Bernie will not be able to move Congress. He will get zero help from the private sector. He will have decimated the Democratic party, weakening candidates down ballot across the country, leaving us all open to an increased tide of Republican voter suppression, religion-based legislation, environmental destruction, and all-around government dysfunction.
 
Hillary will use the Obama model. Hillary has the connections, global respect, and experience to bring together competing and aligned interests, to apply pressure where it will do the most good, and to make the most progress possible, even in Congress. Hillary Clinton got health insurance for children and organized international pressure that led to an historic deal with Iran. Where is Bernie’s landmark policy achievement?

Obama to release $4 trillion-plus budget for 2017

President Barack Obama is unveiling his eighth and final budget, a $4 trillion-plus proposal that’s freighted with liberal policy initiatives and new and familiar tax hikes — all sent to a dismissive Republican-controlled Congress that simply wants to move on from his presidency.

The budget will be released Tuesday morning, the same day as the New Hampshire primary when it’s likely to get little attention. It comes as the deficit, which had been falling over the duration of Obama’s two terms, has begun to creep up, above the half-trillion mark.

The White House is countering the worsening deficit outlook with a proposed $10-per barrel tax on oil that would finance “clean” transportation projects. It also is sure to propose taxes on the wealthy and corporations.

Long gone are proposals such as slowing the automatic inflation increase for Social Security benefits and other ideas once aimed at drawing congressional Republicans into negotiations on a broader budget deal.

Now, Obama has broken out a budget playbook filled with ideas sure to appeal to Democrats.

Read Full Article => Obama to release $4 trillion-plus budget for 2017 – The Washington Post


 

 

Obama names cancer task force

President Barack Obama signed a presidential memorandum Thursday establishing a White House Task Force on cancer, placing Vice President Joe Biden in charge.

The goal of the task force was to “put ourselves on a path to achieve in just five years research and treatment gains that otherwise might take a decade or more,” according to the memorandum.

In a blog post on Medium, Biden said he doesn’t claim to be a cancer expert but does have experience bringing people together.

“This will be the first time this kind of group has met as a team, charged with this kind of goal,” Biden wrote.

“Right now, we’re on the cusp of incredible breakthroughs in both research and therapies … The task before us is to break through some of the barriers and do what we can to help speed up the progress, so that we can deliver treatments and increase access to these new approaches for millions more people.”

Biden, when he announced last year he wouldn’t run for president, called for a “moonshot” to cure cancer in the United States.

READ FULL ARTICLE => Obama names cancer task force – CNNPolitics.com

 

Clinton’s ‘Corporate Ties’ Are Exactly What We Need

151222_DX_Clinton-Praise.jpg.CROP_.promo-xlarge2

One of the frustrations of being a ‘rational’ progressive is watching people you largely agree with be completely wrongheaded in the way they pursue progressive goals.

I am a bang for the buck kind of guy. Human capital is limited, so I like to see progressives devote energy and resources where they can do the most good instead of getting distracted by trivialities, passing concerns, and the emotional issue of the day.

Why spend all of our outrage on a pipeline project (Keystone) that is already 75% complete, and will arguably provide safer and cleaner transport of oil than rail cars ever will? That is not advocacy for Keystone XL, instead it is a desire to see progressives not allow themselves to be distracted by trivialities. Far more important than the construction of one pipeline are appertaining issues like federal and state use of eminent domain and indigenous rights. The average lifespan of an oil pipeline is 33 years. Today we are still abusing indigenous peoples and their lands, and eminent domain is a concept that is woven into our founding documents.

We should be concerned about water pipe in Flint, Detroit, New York, and Boston before we get up in arms about oil pipe in Nebraska.

Along these lines, there is one criticism of Secretary Clinton that I see with regularity and find particularly troubling – Clinton’s ‘corporate ties’ mean she is bought and paid for, and that she will certainly sell out the progressive agenda the second she is elected. Some have made similar accusations and charges against President Obama.

Before getting to the flawed premise of this charge, I just want to point out the absurdity of accusing someone with decades of advocacy on record of not being true to the cause. I also want to point out how similarly absurd attacks against Al Gore (decades of environmental advocacy, accused of pretending to get elected) led directly to George W. Bush.

But to the point: one of Clinton’s greatest assets, and probably the greatest reason I will be voting for her, is because of her corporate connections.

As a former first lady, a Senator from New York, the Secretary of State, and a member of the founding family of the Clinton Foundation, which led to the Clinton Global Initiative, the Clinton Health Access Initiative, and the Clinton Climate Initiative among others, Hillary Clinton has brought together Corporations and governments around the world to contribute money and other resources, making direct and significant impacts in people’s lives.

Lost in a sea of rhetoric, it is easy for most of us to forget or never see the depth and breadth of the efforts of some of the most significant figures in our society. Michael Jordan and Pete Rose are just as likely to be thought of in combination with shoes and gambling as they are for the contributions to their sports. John F. Kennedy is more likely to be remembered in relation to Marilyn Monroe than he is for the creation of the Peace Corps (created by executive order, by the way).

Similarly, the same can be said for President Obama and his ‘corporate ties’. President Obama could not get most of his agenda through Congress. He had to turn to corporations to get assistance making progress on health care, education, and green energy. Trillions of dollars. Without ‘corporations’, progressive issues would have gone next to nowhere the last eight years.

One of the first steps to getting any sort of health care reform passed was cooperation from the industry. The first few months in office, Obama got health industry groups to agree to cut costs. Bernie wants to take private corporations out of health care and has proposed a 1.8 trillion dollar plan that will likely produce savings for the American public. President Obama worked with corporations and got them to pledge 2 trillion in savings through cooperation, not confrontation.

Bernie, among others, has been critical of the Paris Agreement on climate change, saying it doesn’t go far enough. This criticism can generously be called a joke. Getting 188 countries to agree on anything is a significant achievement. No agreement will go far enough until we live in sustainable societies on a healthy planet. But what should be recognized is that the first step to getting any agreement at all was the cooperation of over 80 major corporations. While the Republican Congress not only refused to act on the climate and actually tried to sabotage any international efforts made by the President, the President got over 160 billion dollars in commitments from private corporations to help in the fight against climate change.

While a Republican Congress denied every effort of the President to make important domestic policy investments, even shutting down the government to prevent any spending at all, the President turned to private corporations to do everything possible for the nation’s students. In 2011 he obtained 100 million to reduce drop-out rates and close the achievement gap between ethnic groups. In 2014 he obtained 2.75 billion to improve technology and provide goods and services to the nation’s schools. In 2015 he obtained 240 million for his “Educate to Innovate” campaign to help students in STEM programs.

All this from evil corporations. And this is only a partial list. Many efforts likely never even made it to the news editor’s office, let alone trash can.

Here’s the thing: Clinton is even better connected than Obama.

We are not going to overwhelm the Republicans anytime soon. Even with majorities in Congress, we saw during the fight for the ACA how difficult it is to make anything happen. Progressives desperately need those corporate ties to continue moving our agenda forward with or without the cooperation of wingnut ideologues.

And it’s not just Republicans that are an obstacle. Often it is government itself. Corporations own their money. They can do what they want with it. The same can not be said for governments. A law has to be written for a government to spend money. A law has to be written for a government to borrow money. Because it is our money, not the government’s. That is why you so often hear of federal and state governments declaring national disasters and states of emergency. Because without those, in the event of a crisis if the money is not already allocated, you must write and pass legislation before you can do a single thing to help a single person.

Look at Flint. If you read the governor’s emails it is clear that helping people in places like Flint and Detroit quickly becomes a discussion about the flow of money. Private corporations are much more equipped to make moves and create vehicles to move money quickly and efficiently.

Yes there needs to be changes to corporate law, but global corporate connections are a progressive’s best chance at making a significant and immediate impact in people’s lives in the current political climate. Clinton has those connections, and that is why she is in the best position of anyone I have ever seen to make progress on a progressive agenda.


 

TRP News – Progressive News & Information – September 14, 2015

TRP News with James Andre.

This week – Kim Davis is back to work, Congress is back to work, and both are refusing to do their jobs. Dem primary features more of the same, migrant news, and an update on the situation in Gaza.

0:30 Kim Davis
6:14 Dem Primary
22:55 Congress
35:20 Migrants
46:39 Gaza

For audio only, stream or download here : https://archive.org/details/TRPNews


 

Barack Obama’s Long Game

Barack Obama is not a modest man, but when it comes to assessing his or any president’s place in the long American story, he has been heard to say, “We just try to get our paragraph right.” Yet the way a raft of recent events have broken sharply in his favor, Obama suddenly seems well on his way to writing a whole page—or at least a big, fat passage—in the history books.

From the Supreme Court decisions upholding his signature health care plan and the right of gay Americans to marry, to contested passage of fast track trade authority, the opening of normal diplomatic relations with Cuba and an international agreement to curtail Iran’s nuclear weapons program, Obama is on a policy and political roll that would have seem unimaginable to many in Washington only a few months ago.

“Obama may be singular as a president, not only because of his striking background,” says Kenneth Adelman, who was Ronald Reagan’s arms control negotiator with the Soviets three decades ago, and who has his doubts about the Iran deal. “It may turn out that unlike virtually any other president, his second term is actually better than his first.”

Rallying his cabinet in January in the wake of the Democratic Party’s decisive defeat in last fall’s midterm elections, Obama himself maintained, “Interesting stuff happens in the fourth quarter.” This president has always been something of a clutch player, but his command of recent events—from his soaring eulogy for the victims of the Charleston church massacre, to his commutation of more sentences for non-violent criminal offenders than any president since Franklin Roosevelt—goes a good way toward proving the prescience of his words.

Read Full Article => Barack Obama’s Long Game – POLITICO Magazine


 

TRP News – Progressive News & Information – August 10, 2015 – The Rational Progressive

TRP News with James Andre.

This week – the Jade Helm military exercise brings out the crazies, Potential Reid successor Senator Schumer bucks White House on Iran deal, voting rights on the 50th anniversary of the voting rights amendment, an update on the HIV outbreak in Indiana, the EPA accident polluting a Colorado river with heavy metals, Guantanamo may finally be closing, and Bernie Sanders, #blacklivesmatter, and the blatant racism of the “Left”.

0:27 Jade Helm 15
4:12 Iran Nuclear Deal
6:15 Voting Rights
9:14 Indiana HIV
10:55 Animas River Spill
12:52 Guantanamo
14:16 Black Lives Matter

For audio only, stream or download here : https://archive.org/details/TRPNews


 

 

TRP News – Progressive News & Information – August 3, 2015 – The Rational Progressive

TRP News with James Andre.

This week – Sanders vs Clinton, smears and facing reality, the Iran deal is being reviewed by Congress and touted by Sec Kerry, Obama reveals new carbon emissions rules, the first of their kind in the nation, Fukushima takes steps forward in the clean up of the nuclear accident, and the establishment of an 8MW offshore wind plant, and in France migrants try to cross the channel tunnel into England, and Italy rescues more crossing the Mediterranean.

0:25 Clinton/Sanders
13:37 Iran Deal
15:44 Carbon Rules
17:26 Fukushima
21:00 Migrants
For audio only, stream or download here : https://archive.org/details/TRPNews


 

Why Progressives Shouldn’t Support Bernie – Barney Frank

I know that there is a counter-argument made by some on the Democratic left that a closely contested nomination process will help our ultimate nominee — that Clinton will somehow benefit from having to spend most of her time and campaign funds between now and next summer proving her ideological purity in an intraparty fight, like Mitt Romney in 2012 — rather than focusing on her differences with the conservative she will face in the election. But neither an analysis of the current political situation nor the history of presidential races supports this.

I believe strongly that the most effective thing liberals and progressives can do to advance our public policy goals — on health care, immigration, financial regulation, reducing income inequality, completing the fight against anti-LGBT discrimination, protecting women’s autonomy in choices about reproduction and other critical matters on which the Democratic and Republican candidates for president will be sharply divided — is to help Clinton win our nomination early in the year. That way, she can focus on what we know will be a tough job: combating the flood of post-Citizens United right-wing money, in an atmosphere in which public skepticism about the effectiveness of public policy is high.

I realize that before explaining why I am convinced that a prolonged prenomination debate about the authenticity of Clinton’s support for progressive policy stances will do us more harm than good, that very point must be addressed. Without any substance, some argue that she has been insufficiently committed to economic and social reform — for example, that she is too close to Wall Street, and consequently soft on financial regulation, and unwilling to support higher taxation on the super-rich. This is wholly without basis. Well before the Sanders candidacy began to draw attention, she spoke out promptly in criticism of the appropriations rider that responded to the big banks’ wish list on derivative trading. She has spoken thoughtfully about further steps against abuses and in favor of taxing hedge funds at a fairer, i.e., higher, rate.

This is reflective of her role in the 1990s, when she was a consistent force for progressive policies in her husband’s administration. And as Paul Krugman documented throughout the 2008 nomination campaign, she was, on the whole, to Barack Obama’s left on domestic issues.

Read Full Article:> Why Progressives Shouldn’t Support Bernie

TRP News – Progressive News & Information – July 20, 2015

 

 

TRP News with James Andre.

This week – the Iran deal finally happens and is sent to Congress and the U.N., ISIL ramps up efforts to expand ranks, The federal deficit and debt ceiling, Democrats and Clinton vs. Sanders, the Obamas go to New York City and the haters go crazy.

0:20 Iran Deal
6:00 ISIL
11:35 Federal Budget Deficit
15:00 Clinton vs. Sanders
19:10 Obama in NYC

 

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TRP News – Progressive News & Information – June 29, 2015

TRP News with James Andre.

This week Fast Track has passed and been sent to the President, the Islamic State turns one year old and calls for a month of disaster, SCOTUS hands down several important decisions including same sex marriage, the Iran talks overrun but are said to be near completion, and the politics of smear by association.

0:19 TPA/Fast Track
5:38 Islamic State
8:35 SCOTUS
15:33 Iran Negotiations
18:30 Smear, Distract, Deceive

For audio only, stream or download here : https://archive.org/details/TRPNews