July 6, 2017

Posted by orrinj at 7:48 PM

THE TRAGICOMEDY OF THE LAST MAN:

Trump's Warsaw speech pits western world against barbarians at the gates (David Smith,  6 July 2017, The Guardian)

"Americans, Poles, and the nations of Europe value individual freedom and sovereignty," said Trump, wearing his customary red tie. "We must work together to confront forces, whether they come from inside or out, from the south or the east, that threaten over time to undermine these values and to erase the bonds of culture, faith and tradition that make us who we are.

"If left unchecked, these forces will undermine our courage, sap our spirit and weaken our will to defend ourselves and our societies."

It was not hard to detect the voice of the White House chief strategist, Steve Bannon, the nationalist-nihilist who once promised that the Trump era would be "as exciting as the 1930s" and is a student of The Fourth Turning, a book that argues history moves in cycles and America is on the brink of its latest violent cataclysm.

Nor was it hard to see the hand of Trump's speechwriter Stephen Miller, principal author of Trump's inaugural address in January, in which the word "America" appeared even more frequently than "civilisation" did this time, most notoriously as "American carnage".

We so wanted 9-11 to signal a great clash of civilizations, but it turned out only one was involved.  Then we thought maybe the Credit Crunch would give us that economic struggle our grandparents always harkened back to, but W, Ben Bernanke and the UR fixed it with little effort.  And party partisans long to discover in the opposition either communists/socialists, on the one hand, or Social Darwinists, on the other, but instead parties in the Anglosphere are all neoliberal/Third Way.

Folks tend to dismiss the End of History as a boast, without reading the rest of Fukuyama, as he warns that we will be lost with no great challenges left to define ourselves against.

We are the sad generations whose only enemy is so small in number and controls so little territory that they're hard to find so we can kill them from afar; whose society must wrestle with declines in nearly every social pathology; and whose greatest economic challenge is the increasing ability to create ever greater wealth with ever less labor.

It's little wonder fake tough guys are so unbalanced.  

Posted by orrinj at 7:01 PM

REFORM, NOT REPEAL:

Senate Republicans May Have Found Their Health-Care Compromise (Eric Levitz, 7/06/17, New York)

[T]he reemergence of the strategy of repealing Obamacare in one bill, and replacing it in another, might just lay the foundation for the Senate GOP's grand bargain over health care. Observe how Rand Paul described his vision for "clean repeal" on Fox News Sunday:

Let's do clean repeal like we promised, and, I think, you can get 52 Republicans for clean repeal. You can have a simultaneous bill -- or a concurrent bill -- that they can call replace, and that I think, perhaps, if it's big spending, they could probably get Democrats to go along with big spending. I'm not for that, but I'm saying, I want repeal to work, and the way you do it is you separate into two bills and you do it concurrently.
In other words, Paul is asking leadership to give conservatives one more chance to register their symbolic opposition to Obamacare, for old time's sake -- and then, immediately pass a "big spending" bipartisan bill that props up the existing law, with moderate Republican and Democratic votes.

All comedy is conservative and libertarians are just hilarious.

Posted by orrinj at 6:20 PM

LAUGHINGSTOCK:

As E.U. and Japan Strengthen Trade Ties, U.S. Risks Losing Its Voice (PETER S. GOODMAN, JULY 6, 2017, NY Times)

In the master plan advanced by President Trump, an unabashedly aggressive United States is supposed to reclaim its rightful perch as the center of the commercial universe, wielding its economic dominance to dictate the rules of global trade.

As it turns out, the rest of the planet has its own ideas.

Major economies show no inclination to accept American designs on trade -- an attitude on display on Thursday as the European Union and Japan agreed to the broad outlines of a free trade deal before a summit meeting of world leaders. If completed, the deal would further the exchange of goods and services between their two markets while, in relative terms, diminishing opportunities for American companies.

These two trading powers, both bedrock American allies, are effectively proceeding with plans to bolster globalization just as the United States is turning to protectionism. Large areas of the global economy are now on divergent paths, creating more uncertainty for multinational companies.

Last fall, Canada and the European Union struck a mammoth trade deal, establishing the rules for a significant chunk of commerce across the Atlantic. The bloc's latest deal tethers its fortunes closer to Asia and to Japan, which has the world's third-largest economy.

By contrast, the United States debates the merits of erecting a wall along its southern border, argues about the legality of barring immigrants from several predominantly Muslim nations, and contemplates imposing tariffs on steel imports.

Well, the Steele Dossier says he likes being treated that way....

Posted by orrinj at 6:18 PM

THANKS, UR:


Posted by orrinj at 6:04 PM

ALL COMEDY IS CONSERVATIVE:


Posted by orrinj at 6:01 PM

WE ARE ALL THIRD WAY NOW:

Oregon Just Took the Lead in Getting Americans to Save More for Retirement (Eric Pianin, July 6, 2017, Fiscal Times)

Bucking resistance from a Republican Congress and the Trump Administration, Oregon has become the first state to launch a program requiring private employers to either offer their own 401 (k) savings accounts or automatically sign up workers for state-run individual retirement accounts. [...]

The so-called OregonSaves program began over the weekend with a modest pilot project and will gradually be extended to all businesses by mid-2020. Employees are automatically enrolled in the savings program unless they choose to opt out, and their contributions of up to 10 percent of their pre-taxed income are made through automatic payroll deductions.

The Roth IRAs that workers invest in are "portable" and stay with them throughout their careers, regardless of where they work. Employers are not responsible for contributing to the retirement accounts, and their primary responsibility is passing along information about the program and handling payroll deductions.

Do the same with HSAs.
Posted by orrinj at 5:53 PM

MODERNITY IS SO CONFUSING (self-reference alert):

FEMALE REPORTERS ARE BEING TURNED AWAY FROM THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES FOR WEARING SLEEVELESS TOPS (KATIE KILKENNY, 7/06/17, Pacific Standard)

Over the last three months, several female journalists have reported being barred from the Speaker's Lobby at the House of Representatives for wearing sleeveless dresses or blouses, though no written rule exists prohibiting bare shoulders.

Went for a longer walk than usual on the 4th, much of it along roads with no sidewalk or shoulder, so I put on a day-glo orange tank top and the family objected that I was too hairy to wear such.  I asked if the same folks who tell me I have to be accepting of everyone and everything were really body-shaming their father/husband?


Posted by orrinj at 5:44 PM

ALONG THE ANGLOSPHERE:

Global Britain inching towards an 'emerging Anglosphere' post- Brexit (Andrew Mycock & Ben Wellings, May 18, 2017, Business Standard)

[T]he Anglosphere is the other side of the Brexit coin. But what is this novel ideology, which rose to prominence during the Brexit referendum? Where did it come from, and how will it affect Australia?

The origins of the Anglosphere concept were first presented in the late 19th century.

Imperial federation was proposed as an alternative to growing instability within the British Empire and growing competition from external rivals (not least the US).

However, although having some influential friends such as one of Australia's founding fathers, Alfred Deakin, the proposition lacked sufficient precision in terms of its form and purpose. The dream faded.

Nevertheless, the concept of the "English-speaking peoples" was not totally dead. Brief periods of political support manifested but quickly passed, particularly in pivotal moments of change.

During the second world war, and as the UK prepared to "abandon" its empire and join the European Economic Community, support for the English-speaking peoples as a political community was strengthened.

More recently, the Anglosphere has been advanced by an influential international alliance of predominantly conservative politicians, commentators and public intellectuals. This loose grouping shares an insurgent ideological and geopolitical agenda that informs ambitions for an alternative world order, including Britain's withdrawal from the EU and the EU's eventual collapse.

During the Brexit referendum, senior politicians in the "Leave" campaign - such as Nigel Farage, Michael Gove, Daniel Hannan, and David Davis - also made explicit reference to the potential of the Anglosphere.

India, Israel elevate their ties to strategic partnership (Indrani Bagchi, Jul 6, 2017, Times of India)

 India and Israel elevated their ties to a strategic partnership+ as India identified Israel as a major development and technological partner after Prime Minister Narendra Modi+ finished official discussions with his counterpart Benjamin Netanyahu here yesterday.

A joint statement+ issued at the end of the talks said, "This historic first-ever visit by an Indian Prime Minister to Israel solidified the enduring friendship between their peoples and raised the bilateral relationship to that of a strategic partnership." But the discussions, according to sources went much beyond the official. Both men obviously found a personal connect -- Modi invited Netanyahu and his family to India. Abandoning diplomatic niceties, Netanyahu jumped in with "I accept."

Posted by orrinj at 5:29 PM

DOUBLING DOWN ON FAILURE:

CRACKS HAVE ALREADY BEGUN APPEARING IN TRUMP'S PLAN TO SMOKE OUT VOTER FRAUD (JESSICA HUSEMAN, 7/06/17, Pacific Standard)


Marc Lotter, spokesman for Pence, told ProPublica the state voter information will be run "through a number of different databases, looking for the possibility for areas where voter rolls could be strengthened."

While Lotter would not say specifically which databases the rolls would be run against, The Washington Times reported last week the commission may seek to check the names against the federal government's database of non-citizens. A 2012 attempt by Florida to do that resulted in many legitimate voters being falsely flagged because they had the same names as people in the federal database. Gov. Rick Scott scrapped the effort and eventually apologized.

Comparing names nationwide could result in far more false positives.

"How many Manuel Rodríguezes born in 1945 who are citizens are going to be on an immigration list? There are likely to be several," said Charles Stewart, a professor at MIT and expert in election administration. "How will you know if he's the immigrant, or he is one of the several people with that name who are citizens and legally registered?"

Kobach runs a matching program that appears to have its own high rate of errors. A recent study by political scientists at Stanford University found that Kobach's Interstate Voter Registration Crosscheck Program had 200 false positives for every actual double registration.

Posted by orrinj at 5:22 PM

EVERYONE PREFERS THE HERITAGE PLAN:

GOP senators criticize health bill in town halls (Sam Baker, 7/06/17, Axios)

Rank-and-file Republicans are continuing to distance themselves from their party's unpopular health-care bill as the July 4 recess nears its end.

Sen. John Hoeven told constituents he ""doesn't support the bill as it stands," but believes the Senate will get to something better, according to the Bismarck Tribune.

Sen. Jerry Moran, facing a crowd with a lot of health-care questions, also reiterated his opposition to the most recent Senate bill, the Topeka Capital-Journal reported. Moran said he wants a more bipartisan process and to preserve protections for people with pre-existing conditions.

One reason the GOP health bill is a mess: No one thought Trump would win (Paul Kane July 6, 2017, Washington Post)

Sen. Patrick J. Toomey offered a simple, remarkable explanation this week for why Republicans have struggled so mightily to find a way to repeal the Affordable Care Act.

"Look, I didn't expect Donald Trump to win, I think most of my colleagues didn't, so we didn't expect to be in this situation," the Pennsylvania Republican said Wednesday night during a meeting with voters hosted by four ABC affiliates across his state.

Repealing Obamacare was just red meat for the rubes.




MORE:
A GOP stunt backfires, and accidentally reveals a truth Republicans want hidden (Greg Sargent, July 5, 2017, Washington Post)

The Indiana Republican Party posed a question to Facebook on Monday: "What's your Obamacare horror story? Let us know."

The responses were unexpected.

"My sister finally has access to affordable quality care and treatment for her diabetes."

"My father's small business was able to insure its employees for the first time ever. #thanksObama"

"Love Obamacare!"

"The only horror in the story is that Republicans might take it away."...

By 8:30 a.m. Tuesday, the Indiana GOP's post collected more than 1,500 comments, the vast majority in support of Obamacare.

As David Nather points out, this reveals that the energy in this battle right now is on the side of those who want to save the Affordable Care Act. 

Posted by orrinj at 5:17 PM

FREELOADERS!:

Immigrants Cost Taxpayers, Then Pay More Than Most : New research shows immigrants ultimately make state and local governments more money on average than native-born Americans. (LIZ FARMER | JULY 6, 2017, Governing)
 
While the national debate rages over immigration, new research shows how much new immigrants cost state and local governments in the short-term -- and how much they pay off in the long-term.

Two studies, one by the Urban Institute and a larger one by the National Academies of Science (NAS), find that first-generation immigrants are costlier to state and local governments than native-born adults, but over time, those effects reverse. While first-generation immigrants cost an average of nearly $3,000 more per adult, the adult children of these immigrants eventually catch up and contribute the most on average to federal, state and local coffers.

Kim Reuben, a senior fellow at the Urban Institute, says the initial higher costs of new immigrants is in large part because of their children. "Education is expensive -- if you have more kids in general as a group compared to other groups, you're going to have higher costs," says Reuben, who co-authored the study and contributed to the NAS report. "But the answer isn't to not educate those kids because we also find that the people who contribute the most to society, even when you control for demographics, are these immigrant [kids]."

Demographic data show that immigrants tend to have more children than their native-born counterparts -- 0.52 dependent children versus 0.36 dependent children per adult -- who depend upon state and local education resources.

The NAS data also show impressive upward mobility between first- and third-generation immigrants, primarily due to higher educational attainment. In California, for example, the average annual income for first-generation immigrants is nearly $29,000. By the third generation, average income is more than $42,000. State and local governments begin reaping the rewards of their investments with second-generation immigrants. The NAS report concludes that this generation contributes more in taxes on a per capita basis during their working years than their parents or other native-born Americans do.

Then factor in the human capital value of the children....
Posted by orrinj at 3:08 PM

IT'S A DEFLATIONARY EPOCH:

The Inflation Target Trap (Daniel Gros, 7/06/17, Project Syndicate)

Central banks have a problem: growth in much of the world is accelerating, but inflation has failed to take off. Of course, for most people, growth without inflation is the ideal combination. But central banks have set the goal of achieving an inflation rate of "below, but close to 2%," as the European Central Bank puts it. And, at this point, it is hard to see how that can be achieved.

0% is too high.

Posted by orrinj at 2:57 PM

LAUGHINGSTOCK:

Report: Trump Couldn't Find a Hotel Room in Hamburg (Adam K. Raymond, 7/06/17, New York)

When President Trump lays his head to rest tonight in Hamburg, Germany, he will reportedly be doing so in a government-owned guesthouse. That wasn't his first choice, but after the White House was unable to find a ritzy Hamburg hotel to host him, it was Trump's best option.

It's unclear if Trump encountered so many "no vacancy" signs because his team is disorganized or because he's reviled. BuzzFeed blames staffers who got a late start booking Trump's travel plans. By the time they began searching for hotels in Hamburg, all the rooms were booked.

Posted by orrinj at 2:43 PM

OLD WHITE PEOPLE LIKE FREE STUFF TOO:

Most Republicans in the U.S. like Medicaid. Who knew? (Tami Luhby, July 6, 2017, CNN Money)



republicans favorable view medicaid


Posted by orrinj at 2:32 PM

AT A MINIMUM WE CAN SAY...:

The Patriotism We Need: Principled and Spirited : a review of Steven F. Hayward's Patriotism Is Not Enough: Harry Jaffa, Walter Berns, and the Arguments that Redefined American Conservatism  (Carson Holloway, July 5th, 2017, Public Discourse)

All of the questions that Hayward explores are of perennial interest to students of American politics. Once again, however, none is of more immediate importance than the question of patriotism and its proper basis, which is a key theme of the book, as its title indicates. What does Hayward mean by asserting that "patriotism is not enough"? He seeks to remind us that, at least for a political community like the United States, a healthy politics requires more than just a sentimental attachment to the country and its interests. As he says, "American patriotism is based on ideas." Unlike most countries, America was founded at a particular moment in time and, more importantly, on the basis of certain moral and philosophical principles to which its founders dedicated it. American patriotism, therefore, needs to be an enlightened patriotism, in the sense of being informed by knowledge of the founding principles and reflection on how to preserve them and apply them anew in each generation.

Put another way, America has a political identity much more distinct, and much more central to its being, than other nations, many of which have existed for a long time and maintained some kind of stable identity under a variety of regimes. At least until recently, a perfectly good Frenchman might be a republican, a monarchist, a socialist, or a communist. A good American, however, must be committed to a particular political creed: the natural rights doctrine of the Declaration of Independence and the republican self-government under law established by the Constitution. Accordingly, American patriotism, and American conservatism, is concerned with understanding and preserving this creed, the way of life to which it gives rise, and the institutions and mores that sustain it. This is the kind of patriotism and conservatism taught by both Harry Jaffa and Walter Berns, whatever disagreements they had on other questions.

Hayward's book is so timely precisely because the kind of patriotism he discusses provides a useful corrective for Trump-style nationalism. The patriotism to which Trump appeals is almost entirely affective and hardly at all intellectual. As has been observed many times, he almost never refers to the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, or the founding more generally. Instead of meditating on the country's highest ideals, Trump usually expresses patriotic solicitude for its most elementary needs. He wants America and its citizens to be safe and prosperous.

One can see this, for example, in the way Trump talks about how immigration should be regulated. A conservative in the mold of Jaffa, Berns, and Hayward would remind us that the immigrants we admit should understand, believe in, and have the habits necessary to preserve the doctrine of natural rights and constitutional self-government. Trump has never said anything like this, but has instead simply held that we need to make sure that the immigrants we let in "love our country and love our people."

As Hayward's book rightly reminds us, Trump's emotive patriotism is "not enough." As a candidate for the presidency, Trump was once asked in what sense he is a conservative. He replied that he wants to "conserve the country." There is no reason to doubt his sincerity in this. Trump seems to be animated by a genuine protectiveness for America and its citizens. Nevertheless, one has to admit that the country cannot be conserved or preserved without going beyond sentimental patriotism and adding an intellectual appreciation for the founding principles and disciplined thought about how to carry them forward. An America that is safe and prosperous, but not committed to constitutional self-government and natural rights, would no longer be the same country.

...you can't be a patriot and hate the America that actually exists, as the Left/Right does.
Posted by orrinj at 2:17 PM

THE CAUSE OF MUCH GNASHING:

Wrestling with the complex Gospel according to Bob Dylan, once again (Terry Mattingly, 7/03/17, On Religion)

[D]ylan told People magazine in 1975: "I didn't consciously pursue the Bob Dylan myth. It was given to me - by God. ... I don't care what people expect of me. It doesn't concern me. I'm doing God's work. That's all I know."

What does that mean? Marshall collected material from stacks of published interviews and has concluded that two words perfectly describe Dylan's approach to answering these questions - "inscrutability" and "irascibility." Plus, it's hard to know when Dylan is being "serious, cranky or playful."

Nevertheless, faith language always plays a central role. Marshall cites waves of examples, including a time when Dylan was asked if his raucous "Rainy Day Women #12 & 35" - with its "Everybody must get stoned" chant - was code for getting high. Dylan wryly noted that many critics "aren't familiar with the Book of Acts."

In his Nobel lecture, Dylan also stressed the role great literature has played in his life, dating back to grammar school days. Once again, there were religious themes.

"Moby-Dick," for example, combined all "the myths: the Judeo-Christian Bible, Hindu myths, British legends, Saint George, Perseus, Hercules - they're all whalers." "All Quiet on the Western Front" mixed politics, nihilism and horror, and Dylan noted that he has never read another war novel. In that book, "You're on the real iron cross, and a Roman soldier's putting a sponge of vinegar to your lips."

With "The Odyssey," he said readers have to live the tale, wrestling with gods and goddesses. "Some of these same things have happened to you. You too have had drugs dropped into your wine. You too have shared a bed with the wrong woman. You too have been spellbound by magical voices, sweet voices with strange melodies."

In the end, a song's impact on each person is what matters. "I don't have to know what a song means. I've written all kinds of things into my songs. And I'm not going to worry about it - what it all means," said Dylan.





Posted by orrinj at 2:12 PM

SHE'S MORE AMERICAN:

On world affairs, most G20 countries more confident in Merkel than Trump (JACOB POUSHTER, 7/06/17, pEW rESEARCH)

In the United States, more people have confidence in Merkel than in their own leader (56% to 46%).

President, not leader.

Posted by orrinj at 7:06 AM

DONALD WHO?:

US: Ready to use force in North Korea 'if we must' (Al Jazeera, 7/06/17)

In a hard-hitting speech at an emergency meeting of the UN Security Council after Pyongyang's successful launch of an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM), US Ambassador Nikki Haley on Wednesday said that "the world has become a more dangerous place" and China has a key role in promoting peace.

China is responsible for 90 percent of trade with North Korea and Haley warned that Beijing risks its massive trade with the US if its business dealings with Pyongyang violate UN sanctions.

She said the US does nott seek conflict - "in fact, we seek to avoid it."

But she said the launch of an ICBM "is a clear and sharp military escalation" and the US is prepared to use its "considerable military forces" to defend itself and its allies "if we must".



Posted by orrinj at 7:03 AM

THE TIES THAT BIND:

Trump Organization renews rights to TrumpTowerMoscow.com (MADELINE CONWAY and TYLER FISHER, 07/05/2017, Politico)

The Trump Organization has renewed its claim on more than 1,000 of the web domains registered by its general counsel, including some politically sensitive websites such as TrumpRussia.com and TrumpTowerMoscow.com.

Posted by orrinj at 6:21 AM

KNOWING YOUR ALLIES:

Qatar Stands Up to the Neighborhood Bullies (FAHAD BIN MOHAMMED AL-ATTIYA, JULY 6, 2017, NY Times)


Among the conditions the bloc is attempting to impose on Qatar is that we close down a number of Qatari news organizations, including the award-winning satellite channel Al Jazeera, as well as other London-based outlets. Qatar's stand is clear: We support the freedom of the press -- these outlets have been free to publish content critical of Qatar itself, including about this blockade -- and the bloc's demand that these outlets be closed is unacceptable.

Al Jazeera has achieved international recognition for its reporting in the Middle East, where most other media groups are either slavishly pro-regime or heavily censored. During the Arab Spring, media outlets in the bloc countries typically showed serene and peaceful scenes in cities where, in reality, demonstrators were being mowed down by security forces. These countries operated a virtual news blackout against their pro-democracy movements; now they cannot forgive us because their citizens could tune in to Al Jazeera and know the truth.

Today, the talk shows and social media platforms of the state-supported media in Egypt, Saudi Arabia and the Emirates do their masters' bidding and call for regime change in Qatar. Some talk-show hosts and their guests have even called for terrorists attacks on Qatari soil. Senior Qatari officials have been subjected to character assassinations and insults. In Saudi Arabia and the Emirates, dissent has been criminalized, and anyone speaking up online for Qatar faces prosecution and up to 15 years in prison.

This campaign has been orchestrated from the top. A Saudi state minister and media adviser to the new crown prince, Mohammed bin Salman, said on Twitter that he hoped the Qataris "don't accept" the demands, and "we've only just begun." Deliberately escalating the tension into an implied threat against our very sovereignty, the Dubai deputy chief of police and general security tweeted, "Qatar has always been a part of the U.A.E. that cannot be taken from it."

Let's be clear: Qatar is being punished because conservative actors in the bloc, emboldened by changes in the geopolitical balance in the region, see an opportunity to show people in the Arab world that if you dare to dream of change, the autocratic regimes will mow you down. But Qatar will not back down from this unprovoked attack.

Posted by orrinj at 6:11 AM

WHERE THE WAR ENDS:

To Win Afghanistan, Get Tough on Pakistan (HUSAIN HAQQANI, JULY 6, 2017, NY Times)

Afghanistan's president, Ashraf Ghani, recently asked India to train Afghan military officers and repair military aircraft after frustration with Pakistan, which failed to fulfill promises of restraining the Taliban and forcing them to the negotiating table.

Pakistan's leaders question Afghanistan's acceptance of economic assistance from India even though Pakistan does not have the capacity to provide such aid itself.

It seems that Pakistan wants to keep alive imaginary fears, possibly to maintain military ascendancy in a country that has been ruled by generals for almost half of its existence. For years Pakistani officials falsely asserted that India had set up 24 consulates in Afghanistan, some close to the Pakistani border. In fact, India has only four consulates, the same number Pakistan has, in Afghanistan.

Lying about easily verifiable facts is usually the tactic of governments fabricating a threat rather than ones genuinely facing one. As ambassador, I attended trilateral meetings where my colleagues rejected serious suggestions from Afghans and Americans to mitigate apprehensions about Indian influence in Afghanistan.

While evidence of an Indian threat to Pakistan through Afghanistan remains scant, proof of the presence of Afghan Taliban leaders in Pakistan continues to mount. Mullah Omar, the Taliban's leader, reportedly died in a Pakistani hospital in 2013 and his successor, Mullah Akhtar Mansour, was killed in an American drone strike in Baluchistan Province in Pakistan last year.

The United States should not let Pakistan link its longstanding support for hard-line Pashtun Islamists in Afghanistan to its disputes with India.

In conjunction with the attack on North Korea, the US and India should take away Pakistan's nukes.

Posted by orrinj at 6:09 AM

DONALD VS AMERICA:

Forty-four states and DC have refused to give certain voter information to Trump commission (Liz Stark and Grace Hauck,  July 5, 2017, CNN)

Forty-four states and the District of Columbia have refused to provide certain types of voter information to the Trump administration's election integrity commission, according to a CNN inquiry to all 50 states. [...]

[T]he commission, which is chaired by Vice President Mike Pence, seemed to misunderstand voter privacy laws nationwide. Every state that responded to the commission's letter said it could not provide Social Security numbers, for example. Others said they consider information such as birth dates and party affiliations to be private.

What's more, Kobach asked states to supply the information through an online portal. Many states have rejected this specific request, noting that the commission should file a voter information request through established state websites, as any other party would.

As of Tuesday afternoon, two states -- Florida and Nebraska -- are still reviewing the commission's request. Another two states -- Hawaii and New Jersey -- have not returned CNN's request for comment. And while six states are still awaiting a letter from the commission, four of them -- New Mexico, Michigan, South Carolina and West Virginia -- have already pledged not to provide voters' private information. The other two of those six states, Arkansas and Illinois, have not released statements ahead of receiving the letter.

Just three states -- Colorado, Missouri and Tennessee -- commended Kobach's attempt to investigate voter fraud in their respective statements.

Vlad needs the info.

Posted by orrinj at 6:00 AM

ALL COMEDY IS CONSERVATIVE:

New York Times Falls for Parody North Korea Twitter Account (Alex Griswold, July 5, 2017, Free Beacon)

The piece has since been updated with a correction. "Because of an editing error, an earlier version of this article attributed incorrectly a Twitter statement to the North Korean government," it read.

"The North Korean government did not belittle a joint American-South Korean military exercise as 'demonstrating near total ignorance of ballistic science,' that statement was from the DPRK News Service, a parody Twitter account," the Times admitted.

How does a parody differ from North Korea?  It's like parodying Donald.