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Thu Dec 25, 2014 at 07:52 AM PST

Republicans less bad at losing voters

by phillies

Alas:

I note apparent voter turnout in top of ticket races, 2014 and 2010.  Top of ticket is usually governor.

Republican: 40,934,236, down 5.9% from the party’s 2010 total of 43,507,666.

Democratic: 36,887,850, down 10.1% from the party’s 2010 total of 41,043,721

Green: 416,303, down 18.1% from the party’s 2010 total of 508,041.  In addition, the Top Two ballot scheme means that the Green Party is effectively excluded from the California general election; in 2010, when there was no top two, for California Governor the Greens had 129,231 votes suppressed in the 2014 total.

Libertarian: 1,471,101, up 44.9% from the party’s 2010 total of 1,015,009.   In addition, the Top Two ballot scheme means that the Libertarian Party is effectively excluded from the California general election; in 2010 when there was no top two, for California Governor the Libertarians had 150,895 votes suppressed in the 2014 total.  

Readers will correctly infer that it was the Libertarian party that is circulating these numbers. I mean, for the DNC this is not exactly a bragging point.  

Discuss

Mon Dec 22, 2014 at 07:37 PM PST

Bárðarbunga eruption

by phillies

As the illustrious Rei appears sadly to have left us, I have searched for reports. http://www.jonfr.com/... appears to be moderately up to date.  Apparently weather hinders direct observations.  The lava field is now 80 square kilometers.  The lava is now flowing on occasion to the edge via lava tubes. Apparently there are fewer large earthquakes inside the volcano, but the nearby (?) volcanoes Geysir and Tungafellsjökull are having earthquakes, with earthquakes at Tungafellsjökull being interpreted in terms of dyke intrusions. Apparently the Bárðarbunga caldera is still subsiding, but more slowly, perhaps less than a foot a day.

The author is in Worcester, Massachusetts, which does not have many active volcanoes.

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You can find local links on Facebook, but this one appears to be the core

https://www.facebook.com/...

The event was scheduled a very long time ago, for tomorrow.

I posted on this a long time ago and had little attention.

Some of the people setting this up are not progressive liberals; others I think are. Your mileage may vary.

Celebrate Cyber Monday!  Stand up and move away from your keyboard!

Discuss

I find on the internet that CopBlock and Official Anonymous Florida say that they are organizing a Million March Against Police Brutality. The target date is December 1. This apparently started as a Florida event, but has spread to other places.

I have no inside information on what the organizers are like, either as a group or as persons. Readers who do not like some of them might consider the original T.E.A. Party, which was Libertarian Party Event in Illinois, soon taken over by people who are an opposite of Libertarian. If you oppose police brutality, but are not fond of the founders here, well, you can run away with the effort and make it something true to its claim without the objectionable features.

For more information:

mmapb.org/
facebook.com/OfficialAnonymousFlorida

Events announced to date appear to include:

facebook.com/events/1653012101590814/ (Tampa) facebook.com/events/1450701195191066/ (Tallahassee)
facebook.com/events/601181493336491/ (Fort Myers)
facebook.com/events/505539282913350/ (Cape Coral)
facebook.com/events/335359959957681 (Miami)
facebook.com/events/548177531949403 (Fort Lauderdale)
facebook.com/events/1500890293460973/ (Seattle)
facebook.com/events/1448951168709260/ (Anaheim)
facebook.com/events/1519400254940356/ (Akron)
facebook.com/events/740544522650590/ (Los Angeles)
facebook.com/events/1516722535206125/ (Fullerton) facebook.com/events/248788571998002/ (NYC)

Discuss

Wed Feb 05, 2014 at 08:25 AM PST

Impeach Clapper and Alexander

by phillies

The advantage of having a political PAC is that you can do political advertising. As we raise money, you may be seeing more messages like the following.  There will also be ads with graphics. You can see one on my facebook page (I am the only user named "George Phillies".)  Because I am a Libertarian, I am not asking here for money in support.  Instead, send your money to Marcy Wheeler http://emptywheel.net in support of her efforts.

And if any of you are inspired writers, America needs her Emile Zola.  America needs her J'accuse.

Impeach them Both
Restore the Fourth Amendment!
Preserve the Constitution!
Impeach Director of National Intelligence Clapper
Impeach NSA Director Alexander

(Yes, this does not remove Alexander from his military positions.)

Impeachment? Yes, Impeach them both.

On what charges?

They lied to Congress.
They violated the Fourth Amendment.
They waged electronic war against America.

Poll

Should Clapper and Alexander be impeached?

84%16 votes
5%1 votes
10%2 votes
0%0 votes

| 19 votes | Vote | Results

Continue Reading

Wed Sep 04, 2013 at 08:01 PM PDT

Simple Question for the White House

by phillies

Suppose you get your Congressional authorization and start firing cruise missiles at Syria, as is I gather your plan.

If the Syrian antiaircraft defenses engage them, you have a variety of ways to blow the AAA, SAMs, RADAR, etc., to smithereens.

However, there are a stack of Russian warships near their base in Syria.

What is your working plan if President Putin orders the Russian warships to prevent aggression against Syria, by engaging and shooting down the unmanned cruise missiles?  What if he declares an air forbidden zone over Syria for foreign aircraft, and tries to enforce it against your air force?

Your opinion 'oh, he won't do that' might even be true, but if you have any military advisers who are even marginally competent, they will have analyzed for this serious contingency. What are you planning to do?

Discuss

Fri Aug 30, 2013 at 08:12 PM PDT

8/31 Anti-War Rallies Go Viral

by phillies

On Saturday, August 31st, rallies are scheduled across the United States  against the War on Syria. I have compiled a partial list below the orange maze.  The following list is probably very incomplete.

Some of the people organizing these have happily said they have never done anything like this before,  and have posted facebook pages omitting minor details like the city or state for their rally location.  Also, for facebook announcements there are some anomalies involving which time zone is being posted with the announcement, so check what time these are. Finally, some of these events are not tomorrow. I have done what I could, but the list is very long and some announcements were a tad bit obscure.  The following list is not complete, but I got tired of typing.

Organization and publicity for these events is highly disparate, spanning from socialists to survivalist groups and Gadsden flag wavers, sometimes for the same event.  Be nice to your fellow Americans, and they will be nice to you.

Continue Reading

Sat Aug 17, 2013 at 12:32 PM PDT

Impeach the FISC Twelve

by phillies

The eleven members of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court and the Chief Justice who appoints them should be impeached by the House, tried and convicted by the Senate, and removed from office. The FISC Twelve are:

Reggie Walton
Rosemary M. Collyer
Raymond J. Dearie
Claire Eagan    
Martin L.C. Feldman
Thomas Hogan    
Mary A. McLaughlin    
Michael W. Mosman    
F. Dennis Saylor IV    
Susan Webber Wright
James Zagel
Chief Justice Roberts, who appointed them.   

I begin with our Constitution, Article II Section 4, which provides  

"The President, Vice President, and all civil Officers of the United States shall be removed from Office on Impeachment for, and Conviction of, Treason, Bribery, or other High Crimes and Misdemeanors."
 "Misdemeanor" is a traditional term of art; it refers to abuses of office whether specifically criminal or not.

Historically, impeachments have usually involved criminal acts such as bribery.  However, in 1862 West Humphreys was impeached and removed from office for waging war against the United States.

Much more below the orange sigil of the Worm Ourobouros

Poll

With respect to your position,

60%21 votes
8%3 votes
20%7 votes
0%0 votes
5%2 votes
5%2 votes

| 35 votes | Vote | Results

Continue Reading

Sat Jul 27, 2013 at 11:44 AM PDT

Poll on NSA/Conyers-Amash Amendment

by phillies

As these are progressive Democratic pages, I give credit above first to the progressive Co-Sponsor.

There is considerable controversy over the Amendment of Congressmen Amash and Conyers, an amendment that would only have shut down one program for one year.

Some support the NSA program, some oppose it. I give three levels of each, referring to your Congressman and his position on  NSA domestic wiretaps in the form of systematic searches of all electronic metadata, namely

I Support/oppose NSA domestic wiretaps

I Strongly support/oppose  NSA domestic wiretaps

I Strongly support/oppose  NSA domestic wiretaps, and ready to primary my Congressman if he votes the wrong way.

Poll

What is your position on NSA writetapping

7%6 votes
14%12 votes
68%58 votes
5%5 votes
0%0 votes
4%4 votes

| 85 votes | Vote | Results

Discuss

NOT SNARK! (With Updates)

You can run, but you can't hide. (The CIA has many chiefs, but one Director. This fellow was not the Director.)

The former chief of the Milan CIA Office, Robert Seldon Lady, has been arrested in Panama, reports the Guardian. http://www.guardian.co.uk/...

Former CIA Milan chief held in Panama over abduction of Egyptian cleric

Robert Seldon Lady was convicted in absentia by Italian court for 2003 abduction of Hassan Mustafa Osama Nasr in Milan.

America has worked hard to bring the rule of civilized law to the eight corners of the world.  Perhaps now they will return the favor to us.

The full Guardian story is quite short, so I do not have a lot of material to work with.  There were trials in absentia, there were a bunch of convictions, and now justice is catching up with the miscreants.  Readers may recall a variety of retired foreign tyrants who dared not leaved their countries for fear of arrest; now Americans are joining their ranks.

Continue Reading

Sun Jul 07, 2013 at 05:42 PM PDT

A simple question on the NSA

by phillies

I will not waste vast amounts of space repeating what most people have read at great length. I am phrasing my question to refer to the NSA, though doubtless there is an alphabet soup of government agencies here and abroad in involved in the same matters.  I deliberately do not refer to Snowden and his predecessors and hopefully successors (I have an opinion here) in the title; Snowden, et al., are not the issue here.

The issue is the massive and systematic recording of some sort of information from really large numbers of people almost all of whom are not suspected of being criminals.  This recording could be done as now, or not, and for each choice there would be consequences.

The question is whether or not you find the current situation to the extent you know about it to be acceptable or unacceptable, and by a little or a lot.  "somewhat acceptable" or "somewhat unacceptable" implies that you do or do not approve of the situation, but are not motivated to do something about it.  "quite acceptable" or "quite unacceptable" means that you do or do not approve, and are motivated enough to take concrete actions to maintain the status quo (or get more of the same), or to take concrete actions to change the situation in the privacy direction.

Discussing your answer may give people an understanding of your thoughts, and ideas for ways to repeat the poll with a more clever set of choices. If there is enough interest, perhaps PPP will poll something professionally

Poll

As explained above, I find the current situation on privacy to be

77%35 votes
6%3 votes
2%1 votes
13%6 votes

| 45 votes | Vote | Results

Discuss

Thu Jul 04, 2013 at 03:06 PM PDT

NSA Spying - Incoming Catastrophe

by phillies

Kudos to agnostic for Church of Ineffable Stupidity www.dailykos.com/story/2013/07/04/1221271/-Are-European-balls-bigger-than-ours who previously picked up on part of this story:

Most of us for excellent reasons would not point at NewsMax as a prime source.  However, the following item has nothing to do with whether you are liberal or conservative or vegetarian monarchist.

Honesty dictates that I point at the source, to give credit where it is due:

Re: Watson: Secret NSA Deals Cast Doubt on US Stocks (fwd)

http://www.moneynews.com/...

Theme: America attracts foreign investment because our financial markets and corporate disclosures are better than other people's.  Not perfect, but better.  American companies have stock market prices based in fair part on reasonable estimates of what the companies are worth.  American companies have incomes based on trust in their products and trust in our liability litigators.

The NSA has wrecked the system six ways from Sunday.

In particular:

All those phone etc companies handed over information from their foreign operations to the NSA, NRO, etc.  These were criminal acts in many of those foreign countries.

There is a significant potential for fines, jail sentences, loss of business licenses, etc etc etc. That immunity law that Congress proved will be used in foreign courts, but only as an admission of guilt.

Foreign companies now have a selling point -- go through us; we are not read by the NSA -- and are working to eliminate through-USA routing of data packets.  It appears that some countries have ordered their internet providers to block routing through the USA.

These and other steps may have a negative effect on the value of the American stocks.

Furthermore, the above are material adverse facts, that were not disclosed to investors.  Litigation or criminal prosecution may ensue.  

Worse, there are reports that some IT company executives were offered immunity from prosecution for their role in the SNA activities, and were stupid enough to accept them.  The implication is that they knew or reasonably suspected that their acts were criminal, which may protect them against jail time, but may not protect them and their companies against security fraud suits, not to mention outraged investors sacking their boards of directors and corporate officers.  If you are a stockholder in one of these firms, I have no idea what your best course of action is.  

It may occur to investors that Google etc may suddenly become worth less than might have been expected.  It may be a time to sell telecomm, IT, etc. stocks before it is too late, or perhaps not.

Discuss
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