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Friday Talking Points -- Ohio Continues Winning Streak For Abortion Rights

[ Posted Friday, August 11th, 2023 – 17:38 UTC ]

The biggest political news of the past week came from Ohio, where the voters resoundingly rejected a stealth plan by the Republicans to kill an abortion ballot measure that will appear on November's ballot. By a 57-43 margin, the voters sent a loud "No!" to the GOP, who were trying to change the rules in the middle of the game. This will have national reverberations, especially after Buckeye voters return in a few months to enshrine abortion rights in their state's constitution.

This was merely the latest in an unbroken series of victories for those fighting for women's rights at the state level. These have included ballot measures that either directly addressed abortion or stealthily sidled up to it as well as a state supreme court race in Wisconsin -- and in all of them the forced-birth side lost. Badly.

The measure in Ohio was somewhat of a response to all these crushing defeats, in fact. In all the states so far that have voted for pro-choice measures (or against anti-choice measures), the pro-choice side's vote has been in the high 50s -- but none of them have hit 60 percent. So Ohio Republicans, knowing that an abortion ballot initiative was coming down the Ohio turnpike (as it were) in November, decided to try to get the voters to seriously diminish their own power, by changing the rules to amend the state's constitution from a simple majority vote (50 percent plus one vote) to the new supermajority bar of 60 percent. That way, the voice of the people could successfully be ignored, they thought.

But they hadn't counted on the fact that people generally don't like to vote their own rights away -- in this case, the right of a majority of the state's voters to take issues completely out of the hands of the state's politicians (gerrymandered heavily for Republicans) and put them beyond reach, into the text of their state's constitution. Republicans also hadn't counted on the fact that their Draconian abortion restrictions are extremely unpopular. There is a ban on abortion at six weeks on the books in Ohio, but the law has been put on hold for now by state judges -- which is what spurred the abortion ballot initiative in the first place. Currently, the new abortion-rights amendment is polling at 58 percent support among Ohio voters. This is in a state which used to be a purple battleground but has grown noticeably redder over the past decade or so.

Abortion is now the best wedge issue Democrats have, as that number shows. Virtually all Democratic voters support women's reproductive rights, and a whole bunch of independents do too. Even a whole lot of Republican voters break with their party on the issue.

As we said, this has national repercussions. There are currently movements to get the issue on the ballot in the three red states most likely to reject forced-birth abortion laws: Arizona, Florida, and Missouri. If they all make it to the 2024 ballot, it could drive Democratic turnout in all three states. Missouri is probably beyond President Joe Biden's reach, but Florida is a distant possibility and in Arizona it could indeed be a winning issue (due to Arizona being so closely split on partisan lines, unlike the other two). The failure of Ohio Republicans to get the threshold to amend the constitution raised to 60 percent may give other states' Republicans second thoughts (or at least make them pause) before trying similar things in their own state.

One other possible bit of fallout from this week's vote is that it may also help Senator Sherrod Brown in his re-election fight next year. As the Washington Post put it:

At the top of the list of the biggest losers Tuesday was Ohio Secretary of State Frank LaRose (R), who made himself the face of the initiative and is now running for Senate to unseat Sen. Sherrod Brown (D). LaRose appeared to want to burnish his conservative bona fides -- and perhaps GOP voters will give him credit for trying -- but a primary opponent has already been attacking him for alleged strategic failures.

In their pitch to the voters, Ohio Republicans made the argument: "It isn't just about abortion," and they're right. There are other issues that the GOP is scared of seeing appear on ballots, and all of them are also good wedge issues for Democrats: raising the minimum wage, Medicaid expansion, and legalizing marijuana. Republicans are scared of direct democracy on these and other popular issues, because they know their agenda is so out of step with the mainstream of America's voters. So this week was a big win not just for Democrats and for abortion rights, but also for direct democracy. Vox populi, vox dei, as they say.

In other political news, President Joe Biden signed into being his fifth new National Monument, and it's a mouthful: the Baaj Nwaavjo I'tah Kukveni -- Ancestral Footprints of the Grand Canyon National Monument. This will protect areas (almost a million acres) both north and south of the Grand Canyon from mining and other development. These lands are sacred to many Tribal Nations, which were honored by the name itself ("Baaj nwaavjo" means "where Indigenous people roam" in Havasupi, and "I'tah kukveni" means "our ancestral footprints in Hopi). Biden travelled to Arizona for the official signing ceremony.

But of course the undercurrent of the week was again legal, this time on both sides of the aisle. Today it was announced that the federal prosecutor who brought charges against Hunter Biden has been elevated to special counsel level, which will give him more autonomy from the Justice Department as he pursues the charges he has already filed and his investigation into Hunter's finances. This is all continued fallout from the plea deal with Hunter falling apart at the last minute.

In the House, Republicans are still gung-ho to investigate Hunter, but their big announcements about supposed shady activity keep fizzling. So far, we know exactly what we all knew before they got started: Hunter Biden cashed in on his last name, but there is zero proof that Joe was involved in any of his schemes. And if children and relatives of sitting presidents need extra scrutiny, then where oh where is the investigation into Jared and Ivanka? The amounts of money revealed in the Hunter Biden situation have been the equivalent of loose change found in the couch cushions when stacked up against how much Ivanka and Jared have cashed in, after all. It's time for Democrats to start playing the "whataboutism" game whenever Hunter's name comes up, in fact.

One interesting story from this week wasn't trumpeted by House Republicans, for obvious reasons. An F.B.I. whistleblower filed a complaint that his agency had been politicized. Here's the story, since most people missed seeing it when it appeared:

An FBI agent's supervisor told him to halt an investigation into Rudy Giuliani and cut ties with any informants who reported on the corruption of former President Donald Trump's associates in August 2022, a 22-page whistleblower complaint obtained by Insider shows. The 14-year veteran of the bureau, whose tenure includes a long-term assignment to Russia-centered counterintelligence, alleged in the statement that his bosses interfered with his work in "a highly suspicious suppression of investigations and intelligence-gathering" seeking to shield "certain politically active figures and possibly also FBI agents" who were tied to Russian and Ukrainian oligarchs.

Those individuals, according to the statement, explicitly included "anyone in the White House and any former or current associates of President Trump." The complaint was leaked and posted to a Substack newsletter in mid-July after being originally prepared for Senate Judiciary Committee staffers. The whistleblower, the name of whom the outlet is withholding because he is still an FBI employee and seeking protections from Congress, said he was motivated to file the complaint by a desire to improve the federal agency because of its power to hold "policymakers accountable, whether they're on the left or the right." He added, "This is a decision point. Are we going to do public corruption or not?"

We'll have to keep an eye on this one, to see if Senate Democrats step up to the plate.

Over in Trumpland, the legal problems keep right on developing, as usual (get used it to, folks -- this is going to be a steady drumbeat for at least the next year or so).

While Donald Trump's lawyers have been all over television trotting out various lines of defense tailor-made to fight his battles in the court of public opinion, behind the scenes Team Trump has apparently gotten Trump to couch his language a little more carefully, to bolster their defense. As the Washington Post noted (emphasis in original):

Donald Trump and his most loyal allies have spent the better part of three years falsely claiming that not only was the 2020 election stolen, but that this was proved.

After his federal indictment over attempts to overturn the election, however -- and with another indictment potentially headed his way in Georgia -- the former president has seemingly undergone a subtle shift in his messaging.

He has begun to say that this is his opinion.

During a Newsmax interview Wednesday night, Trump added such a qualifier no fewer than six times in the space of 30 seconds.

"I'm telling them that, in my opinion, the election was rigged," Trump said of the Jan. 2, 2021, call in which he urged Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger (R) to "find" just enough votes to overturn Trump's deficit.

"I believe I won that election by many, many votes, many, many hundreds of thousands of votes," Trump said. "That's what I think."

"That's my opinion, and it's a strong opinion," he added. "And I think it's borne out by the facts, and we'll see that."

To recap: "In my opinion." "I believe." "That's what I think." "That's my opinion." "It's a strong opinion." "I think."

This is rather amazing -- that Trump appears to actually be listening to what his lawyers tell him! That's certainly a novel development, for him. We'll have to see if the advice sticks or not in the next few weeks....

Today, the judge in the election-interference case held a hearing on what rules Trump should be held to on the material the prosecutor will be sharing with him and his lawyers. The judge wasn't impressed by Team Trump's arguments, and promptly issued an order that strictly limits what Trump can say about sensitive evidence. And the judge warned Trump specifically about statements he's already been making on social media that could be interpreted as threats or witness-tampering:

"The fact that he's running a political campaign has to yield to the orderly administration of justice," [U.S. District Court Judge Tanya] Chutkan said. "If that means he can't say exactly what he wants to say about witnesses in this case, that's how it has to be."

"Even arguably ambiguous statements from parties or their counsel, if they can be reasonably interpreted to intimidate witnesses or to prejudice potential jurors, can threaten the process," Chutkan added later. "The more a party makes inflammatory statements about this case which could taint the jury pool... the greater the urgency will be that we proceed to trial quickly."

Got that? The more you mouth off, buddy, the quicker the trial will happen. Deal with it.

In other news from Trump's election-interference case, the government filed a request to set the trial's start date on January 2nd of next year -- after seating a jury in December, so they can get the case rolling immediately after the year-end holiday. This would notably start the trial before any GOP primaries take place. The defense hasn't proposed their own date, which will almost certainly be "at some point after the 2024 election happens." But after that warning to Trump about mouthing off, the judge doesn't seem to be interested in long delays. The trial date could be announced at the next hearing, later this month.

Other news from the same case: it was revealed that the special counsel served a secret subpoena to Twitter for all of Trump's data. What we find intriguing in this is something that has not yet been reported -- did the subpoena cover just what Trump tweeted out publicly, or did it also include his direct messages and other data not visible to the public? That could certainly be a game-changer, depending on whether Trump used such behind-the-scenes features or not (and for what). Also, a memo was leaked which showed Kenneth Chesebro's whole scheme to use the "fake electors" to commit a massive fraud and steal the election. It's from early December of 2020, a full month before January 6th happened.

Of course, this wasn't the only bad legal news Trump got this week. He had filed a nuisance lawsuit against E. Jean Carroll for "defamation" (for calling Trump a rapist), and it was laughed out of court this week by a judge who essentially responded: "But you are a rapist!" Carroll's second suit against Trump will now move forward without this distraction.

Trump has asked the judge in Florida in charge of the secret documents case to allow him to peruse all the secret documents inside his own Florida golf resort. Instead of having to travel to a Secure Compartmentalized Information Facility (SCIF) elsewhere, Trump wants to set up his own. This is rather ironic since he is charged with criminally mishandling papers in the same Florida golf resort -- Trump is in essence saying he wants all the secret documents to return to the scene of the crime. But the judge is pretty Trump-friendly, so who knows what she'll allow?

All of this is taking its toll on Trump's campaign finances. He's paying out tens of millions of dollars in legal fees and is spending money faster than he's taking it in. We don't have the fundraising figures for the third indictment yet, but while Trump's fundraising after his first indictment was impressive, it fell off dramatically after his second. Perhaps even his own supporters are getting tired of footing the legal bills for a billionaire?

And of course, we're not done yet. Right now we've all got Georgia on our minds, to put it lyrically. Next week is almost certainly going to have another "Indictment Day" for Donald Trump, as the prosecutor there brings her evidence to a criminal grand jury. Nobody knows if she will follow the route the federal prosecutor charted -- by limiting the election-related charges to the easiest to prove in court as well as only charging Trump and just listing "unindicted co-conspirators" that can be dealt with later -- or whether she's just going to swing for the fences and bring RICO charges against everybody. But at this point it seems virtually certain that Trump will get a fourth big legal headache at some point next week -- so we've all got that to look forward to!

In other Republican legal news, lawyer Boris Epshteyn (who is speculated to be one of Trump's unindicted co-conspirators in the election case) apparently molested women at a nightclub in Arizona a few years ago -- and it wasn't even his first time:

[Boris Epshteyn] was charged with "assault touching," "attempted sexual abuse," "harassment-repeated acts" and "disorderly conduct-disruptive behavior or fighting." While the first three charges against him were dismissed, Epshteyn pleaded guilty in Scottsdale City Court to the fourth charge and served probation. His conviction was later set aside by the court in January this year.

. . .

The 2021 incident is also not the first time Epshteyn had been arrested in Arizona, according to the outlet. In 2014, he was charged with "assault touching" at another nearby club in Scottsdale, Dierks Bentley's Whiskey Row.

Epshteyn signed a plea deal in the earlier case, agreeing to cut contact with the victim, never return to the venue, pay court fees and complete 25 hours of community service. Handwritten notes on the deal show he was permitted to complete the program in New Jersey, his home state.

No wonder he and Trump are such good buddies! Also, in Minnesota, a big Republican donor was sentenced to 21 years in prison for sex trafficking minors. Nothing like the "party of family values," eh?

Out on the campaign trail, it is Iowa State Fair weekend, so we can all expect some funny photos of Republican politicians awkwardly eating fried food on a stick. A local paper helpfully ran a historic overview of past funny pictures of politicians eating food, from both sides of the aisle, while they were visiting the home of the fabled butter cow.

In Republican debate news, Donald Trump came out and said he wouldn't sign the Republican Party's "loyalty pledge" (promising to support the GOP nominee no matter who it turns out to be), which adds to the suspicion that he's just not going to show up for the first debate (which will happen in a few weeks). Mike Pence announced he had qualified for the first debate, after receiving a windfall of donations following Trump's third indictment (Pence amusingly is selling merchandise with Trump's "too honest" quote on it, which Pence took from the indictment). Pence also released an ad this week that is downright hilarious, as he pretends to pump gas into a pickup truck without actually pumping any gas. All while the pump beeps at him to select his grade of gasoline. "Oops" (as Rick Perry might say).

Ron DeSantis continues to go down in flames, as his poll numbers continue to fall off a cliff and his personal brand of being "anti-woke" just isn't animating Republican voters the way he had hoped. He replaced his campaign manager this week with a loyalist of his who has never run a political campaign before, so that'll probably work out about as well as it sounds. DeSantis has been out on a bus tour of Iowa, but the only news came from the people heckling him.

Let's see, what else? Clarence Thomas didn't just have his hand in one or two cookie jars, it appears, he had his hand buried in dozens of them. Thomas may go down in history with the legacy of "most corrupt Supreme Court justice of all time" in fact. Democrats are calling on him to resign, but of course that would require him to actually have some personal ethics, which Thomas is in short supply of (obviously).

And to close on an amusing note, if you're not doing anything the 26th and 27th of this month, you could always head out to Scotland's Loch Ness, where a group will be launching the biggest monster-hunt in decades. People will be recruited to watch various parts of the lake (which is monstrously long, shall we say) and it sure seems like a good time will be had by all!


Most Impressive Democrat Of The Week

This week, we've got to give a group award to all the voters (well, the Democratic ones, to fit the requirements of the award...) who voted "No" on Issue 1 in Ohio this week.

When the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade, it guaranteed that there will be a lot of political battles at the state level over abortion for years to come. So far, the forced-birth side has lost every single one of these. It is a tailor-made wedge issue for Democrats, since not only do a lot of Republicans cross the aisle in support, but every loss sends the forced-birth side into a frenzy of doubling down on extremism. The zealots who want to control women's bodies always argue (after a loss) that they lost because their own politicians didn't support it strongly enough, and not, you know, because the issue is quite unpopular. This has led to battles on the Republican side over tactics and how Draconian the laws should be, all of which helps Democrats portray themselves as the ones standing up for freedom and civil rights and democracy.

One chart shows the potency of this issue for Democrats -- a chart of all the polling on the issue at the state level. In a whopping 41 states, abortion polls well above 50 percent. This includes ruby-red states like Wyoming and Alabama, it is worth noting. In five states, the polling is incredibly close to 50 percent and the issue could go either way (the chart shows South Carolina and Kentucky marginally over the 50 percent mark and Mississippi, Tennessee, and Idaho marginally below 50 percent). In only four states -- Utah, South Dakota, Arkansas, and Oklahoma -- is the polling well below 50 percent. That is how unpopular restricting women's rights is across America.

So far, Republicans have not woken up to this basic fact. They keep hoping that the voters will support their efforts to deny women basic human rights. And, in vote after vote after vote, they have been the ones disappointed by their misread of the American electorate.

The voters in Ohio just proved this once again. And for doing so, the registered Democrats among them are easily this week's Most Impressive Democrats Of The Week. Well done, Buckeyes! See you back at the polls in November....

[Congratulate Ohio Democratic voters personally (if you know any), to let them know you appreciate their efforts.]


Most Disappointing Democrat Of The Week

We're not going to knock Dianne Feinstein when she is down, after reports she had to go to the hospital after a fall, but we certainly are counting the days until California has a new senator sworn in who is a little more capable of doing the job.

It seems a (Dis-)Honorable Mention is in order for a Democrat who is running (for the time being) against a vulnerable House Republican in California. Aditya Pai seemed to announce he was suspending his campaign, citing "a lack of joy," but then later said the statement was sent out by accident. Here was his explanation:

I wrote that letter as an emotional processing exercise after an exhausting glimpse into the political machine. I sent it to some mentors and staff for perspective before getting back to work; it was never supposed to be shared. Despite the emotional weight of candidacy, my call to service -- not politics -- far outweighs it.

OK, sure. But it's not exactly a statement of strength for his campaign, obviously.

But our Most Disappointing Democrat Of The Week is an old favorite, who apparently is miffed that he hasn't been in the news all that much. West Virginia Senator Joe Manchin floated the possibility of leaving the Democratic Party and becoming an independent in an interview this week.

We're not going to give him any more attention than merely mentioning it, though, since press attention is what he craves so dearly. Instead we're just going to give him this week's MDDOTW and move quickly along....

[Contact Senator Joe Manchin on his Senate contact page, to let him know what you think of his threat.]


Friday Talking Points

Volume 718 (8/11/23)

It's a half-and-half kind of talking points section this week. We start out by doubling down on the abortion issue, which we heartily encourage all Democrats to do (after the victory in Ohio), and then move on to dealing with Donald Trump. So let's get right to it....


   It's all about freedom

Democrats need to lean into this one particular word hard. Because it is almost always a winner in American politics.

"Democrats are fighting hard to protect all women's freedoms. While the Republicans want to strip away the freedom of bodily autonomy from women in states they control, Democrats won't be satisfied until every woman in America has her full rights restored to her and regains the freedoms the Republicans have taken away. We do not need politicians getting in the way of personal decisions made by women and their doctors. We stand strong for women's freedom instead, against the forces that would rip those freedoms away. It's that simple."


   Why not zero weeks?

This is a taunt, since the Republicans are all over the map on the issue and having their own internecine battle over it all.

"Why do Republicans even pretend to have an ounce of compassion? You know that the end of the road for the forced-birth extremists is a 'zero week' ban, right? If abortion is murder, then it's murder from the very start -- it's hard to square that particular circle any other way. So why don't Republicans just stop the pretense and start proposing what they really want to do -- ban all abortions forever, no matter what. Fifteen weeks? That would allow for a lot of abortions. Six weeks? Not Draconian enough. Sooner or later the Republican Party will attempt to do what they really want to do -- institute the most extreme law imaginable: a 'zero week' ban. Why don't you guys just come out and admit it?"


   Restore Roe

This makes things a whole lot easier, and it fits on a bumpersticker to boot.

"For all the discussion about weeks and exceptions and all the rest of it from the forced-birth side of the issue, what Democrats stand for is actually pretty simple: Restore Roe. Put in place laws which guarantee the exact same rights that women had for a half a century under Roe v. Wade. They were pretty workable restrictions, and we will stop at nothing until they are reinstated nationally. So anytime anyone asks a Democrat what exactly they would support in terms of abortion law, there's an easy two-word answer: Restore Roe. That's what we want to do. Get back to the way things were before the Supreme Court overturned it. Just restore Roe -- that's it in a nutshell."


   Leave it up to the voters

This also might qualify as a taunt. But who cares?

"The Republican Party used to be all in favor of each state's voters deciding what abortion laws they should have. But it's funny, as time goes by they keep trying to change the rules so that a majority of state voters aren't allowed to decide for themselves. In something like 90 percent of the states, the voters support abortion rights. So sure, let's take it to them -- let's decide the whole thing at the ballot box. Let's just let the voters decide, shall we?"


   What about Jared and Ivanka?

It really is time to turn the tables on the GOP's "whataboutism" for once.

"I'm sorry... Hunter Biden? Did you just ask me about Hunter Biden? Well, if you feel so strongly about Hunter, why don't you impeach him? Oh, wait... you can't do that because he holds no federal office. He doesn't work in the White House for his dad, even. In fact, he's never been in politics at all. But if we're going to examine close relatives of presidents, then what about Jared and Ivanka? What about that two billion dollars that Jared got from the Saudis? Or all those patents Ivanka got from China while Daddy was serving as president? You want to talk about family members cashing in -- while holding positions of trust in Daddy's White House? Then that conversation really needs to start with Jared and Ivanka."


   Stochastic terrorism

This is a phrase we'd really like to see the media pick up on.

"The worst thing about Donald Trump is how he has normalized political violence and terrorism. This week, in Utah, a man was killed by the F.B.I. as they tried to arrest him on charges of making death threats against President Joe Biden and other Democratic figures. He was armed at the time of this shooting, and had recently posted he was 'cleaning the dust off the M24 sniper rifle' in anticipation of Biden visiting Utah. He also made threats against Merrick Garland and two attorneys who have charged Trump with felonies. This is political terrorism, plain and simple. And the man referred to himself as a 'MAGA Trumper,' so it's no secret where he was getting his ideas from. Earlier, an armed man was arrested near the home of Barack Obama just after Trump posted Obama's home address on his social media site. This man had been charged for storming the Capitol on January 6th. There's a term for this sort of thing, where someone targets or demonizes their enemies and then just sits back and watches the violence -- it is called 'stochastic terrorism.' And that is precisely what Donald Trump is doing right now, against his political enemies, against judges hearing his cases, against witnesses in those cases, against the prosecutors who have charged him, and against anyone else he doesn't like. Donald Trump is waging a campaign of stochastic terrorism against all of them and it's about time to call it what it is and universally condemn it. Political violence should never become normal in America, period."


   Trump lost

Amazingly enough, Republicans running against Donald Trump for their party's presidential nomination have all seemed to actually realize that they are running against Donald Trump. And that to sell their idea that they'd be more electable than Trump they have to admit a very basic truth: Trump lost in 2020. This is a rather remarkable development, because up until this point most of them shied away from saying anything of the sort. So our final talking point is a collection the Washington Post made of all these statements (minus those of Mike Pence, who has also been obliquely condemning Trump for his actions on January 6th). It's a cut-and-paste make-your-own talking point:

[Florida Governor Ron] DeSantis: "Of course he lost."

Sen. Tim Scott (R-S.C.): "I do not believe the election was stolen."

Former U.N. ambassador Nikki Haley: "Do I think Joe Biden is the legitimate president? Yes." (Haley added: "He's a bad one at that.")

Former New Jersey governor Chris Christie: "Of course he lost, and I believe he lost because he lost in a full and fair election."

Vivek Ramaswamy: "[I] was very clear about the fact that Trump lost the election. And I was disappointed that he did not accept that result."

Former Arkansas governor Asa Hutchinson: "I don't believe the election was stolen, and I respect the results."

-- Chris Weigant


Follow Chris on Twitter: @ChrisWeigant

Cross-posted at: Democratic Underground


15 Comments on “Friday Talking Points -- Ohio Continues Winning Streak For Abortion Rights”

  1. [1] 
    C. R. Stucki wrote:

    Re TP2 "Why not zero weks??"

    Or, for Dems, why not zero weeks plus one week? Being expelled from the womb does not make a human being the slightest bit more human than he/she was just prior to the expulsion.

    Human existence is an unbroken continuum from conception to death. Defining arbitrary points on the continuum as positions where human life is somehow more or less human is an exercise in stupidity.

  2. [2] 
    andygaus wrote:

    Pardon me while I exercise my stupidity. An embryo of 16 cells is human, but a baby one day short of being born is much more human and deserves to have more rights. The distinction is an awkward one, but practically speaking, it needs to be made. Yes, there are degrees of how human a pregnancy has become. A fetus is more human than an embryo, almost by definition, because it has assumed something like a human shape.

  3. [3] 
    andygaus wrote:

    The trouble with talking about stochastic terrorism is the word "stochastic." It seems like a word calculated to stick in your throat,and it needs to be explained to every single person who is supposed to understand the phrase. I would explain it (or rename it) by saying that it is "sooner or later" terrorism. You keep saying that John Doe is evil and unAmerican, and sooner or later someone draws the logical enough conclusion that the world would be a better place without John Doe and makes plans to eliminate him.

  4. [4] 
    nypoet22 wrote:


    I'd just forget stochastic and call it terrorism.

  5. [5] 
    MtnCaddy wrote:

    Hey Elizabeth!

    I dod drink that damned alcohol this evening and thence crawled in the bed for to prosecute tomorrow.

    But I suddenly found myself pawing around in the dark for my cellphone — I simply HAD to hear The Needle and the Damage Done.

    So what do you think about a Sunday evening musical throw-down featuring my all-time fave Paul Simon and my second all-time fave singer-song writer Neil Young? With so heavy choices the suggestions would just a-tumble out effortlessly.

  6. [6] 
    MtnCaddy wrote:

    Auto correct giveth and auto correct taketh away…

  7. [7] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:


    but a baby one day short of being born is much more human and deserves to have more rights.

    I hope you are not implying that abortions are being perfomed right up to the moment of birth, are you? Because, I don't see this absurd claim as being pertinent to the effort of having legislatures or the judiciary restrict the practice.

  8. [8] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Hey, Caddy ... unfortunately, this Sunday evening will be impossible for me, in more ways than one. Can we aim for next Sunday?

    Or, you can take the reins yourself and I may be able to chime in for a bit, much later in the evening ...

  9. [9] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Caddy, do you have Neil's concert film on dvd, Neil Young - Heart of Gold, taped in August 2006 at the Ryman Auditorium in Nashville. I play that whenever I'm feeling out of sorts for whatever reason and need to chill out. I've been playing it a lot, lately. It features the world premiere of his album, Prairie Wind, plus most of his hits, including The Needle and the Damage Done.

  10. [10] 
    John M from Ct. wrote:

    Andy and poet on [3] and [4],
    I agree that stochastic is an impossible word in today's politics. I'm the first to admit I have no idea what it means, and I do have a pretty good vocabulary.

    But Chris's point is good, that Trump himself is not a terrorist in the sense of actually committing the criminal acts.

    I suggest 'proxy terrorist' as a description for Trump might ring more bells in people's heads who need some waking up about what he is doing with his hateful and provocative rhetoric.

  11. [11] 
    C. R. Stucki wrote:

    andygaus [2]

    I dispute the concept that there are degrees of humanity, but if you insist that that is a legitimate concept, then you've gotta accept that that same concept applies to the downward part of the cycle of human existence.

    If you are less human because you are not yet fully formed, then you are inevitably likewise less human after parts of you have been lost to deterioration as you approach the end of the cycle.

  12. [12] 
    MtnCaddy wrote:

    Yeah, I had to look stochastic, too.

    I’d have called Trump the “instigator” of domestic terrorism rather than using stochastic.

  13. [13] 
    MtnCaddy wrote:

    Elizabeth has a hot date Sunday evening — neener neener neener!

    Hope you get lucky and of course I’d be happy to wait until next Sunday. Anticipation…anticipation…is making me wait!

    I really enjoyed lastnSunday and I just KNOW that you’re going to turn me on to Niel Young songs that I may have overlooked. So, no worries my good Canadian Sister.

  14. [14] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Hehehehehehehe ... see ya next Sunday, if not before. With all of our collective anticipation building through the week, it should be a blast!

  15. [15] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    i would say "terrorist sympathizer"

    do you want to pardon the terrorists or send them to jail? it's clear which one of those donald wants.

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