Ajit Pai assures us there’s nothing to be worried about by today’s first step towards dismantling Obama-era Net Neutrality rules. He should know – he’s chairman of the Federal Communications Commission and does a pretty mean Harlem Shake!
A bipartisan majority of Americans (83%) are less sanguine. There’s ample reason to suspect newly emboldened telecom companies will institute tiered internet service, disproportionately impacting low-income earners and those living in rural areas. I’ll explain why for a one-time fee of $3.99.
(Year Zero/Day Three Hundred and Twenty-Seven)
That I didn’t get to use that pun in a post bemoaning Alabama’s election of a man you wouldn’t trust to coach high school girls volleyball.
But I don’t mind being overly pessimistic at times, because once the worst case scenario is dispatched, whatever remains isn’t as bad.
Congratulations, Alabama. You didn’t elect a known sexual predator. Just barely.
(Year Zero/Day Three Hundred and Twenty-Six)
Today, Alabamans go to the polls for the special election to fill Jeff Sessions’ Senate seat. They deserve our sympathy; they’re shackled to either establishment Democrat Doug Jones or Roy Moore, a man who has been accused of serial child molestation.
It’s a tough choice for voters. On the one hand, Roy Moore wants to turn America into a theocracy, holds strong homophobic, nativist and xenophobic views, and thinks returning our country to the slavery system would “solve a lot of problems”. On the other hand, Moore was banned from a shopping mall for trying to pick up teenage girls.
Moore’s a cynical predator whose refusal to step down earned an endorsement from the president and renewed RNC funding, but no one will accuse him of being a liberal.
Welcome to the Senate, Judge Moore.
(Year Zero/Day Three Hundred and Twenty-Six)
Donald Trump and GOP Lawmakers may be at philosophical odds on any number of issues, but when it comes to their antipathy for the poor, there’s unanimity.
While candidate Donald Trump pledged to protect some safety net programs, conservatives have long wanted to devolve control of social programs to the states and impose stricter work and drug testing rules. Now that they control both ends of Pennsylvania Avenue, Republicans believe they have a once-in-a-generation opportunity to overhaul those programs, which they have long argued are wasteful, are too easily exploited and promote dependency.
“People are taking advantage of the system and then other people aren’t receiving what they really need to live, and we think it is very unfair to them,” Trump said in October.
The president is expected to sign the welfare executive order as soon as January, according to multiple administration officials, with an eye toward making changes to health care, food stamps, housing and veterans programs, not just traditional welfare payments.
The poor shouldn’t get away with exploiting the system. That’s the hard-won, exclusive domain of the wealthy.
(Year Zero/Day Theee Hundred and Twenty-Five)
Say what you will about Democrats – and I’ve said plenty – but at the national level, the party recognizes if it doesn’t want to alienate its base ahead of the midterms, it can’t support men accused of predatory behavior against women. Hence the “retirements” of Rep. John Conyers’ and Sen. Al Franken. It’s the kind of message they hope conveys “We take women seriously, and we draw the line well before pedophiles”.
And though Franken continues to deny a majority of the eight accusations against him, neither he or any spokesperson would ever brand the women “criminals” like a certain child molester/horse aficionado/future senator.
Well done, Democratic Party. You may be ineffectual, clueless and weak; you may be neoliberal buffoons who did much to exacerbate wealth inequality in this country; you may have resisted socialized medicine in favor of an incrementally less awful healthcare system; you may support awful interventionist military actions, destabilizing leftist governments and drone bombing children; you may be as corrupt as Republican politicians; you may be think a “Black Lives Matter” yard sign is enough to absolve your support of racist police; your spinelessness against the hard right may have moved your brand to the right of Nixon over the years, leaving a bad taste in potential voters mouths – but at least you don’t support a sexual predator.
At least, not anymore.
(Year Zero/Day Three Hundred and Twenty-Two)