“We want to restore democracy there,” Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said last week, walking just to the edge of declaring that regime change is the goal. “We think the Iranian people want that same thing.” – Advertisement – At Daily Kos on this date in 2018—What does Secretary of State Pompeo mean by ‘restore democracy’ in Iran? – Advertisement – In 2014 when he was just a Kansas congressman, Mike Pompeo, now secretary of state and one of the most pugnacious ideologues of the neoconservative club, bragged that it would take only “2000 [bombing] sorties to destroy the Iranian nuclear capacity.” Last month, he wrote in Foreign Affairs his view of how the reimposition of sanctions are meant to bring Iran to its knees and do Washington’s bidding, or be toppled by a populace disgruntled by a smashed economy. Colin H. Kahl, co-director of the Center for International Security and Cooperation, and a former national security and defense official in the Obama administration, dismantled what he calls Pompeo’s “dangerous delusion” in a subsequent essay in Foreign Affairs. I keep sensing an undercurrent of despair when talking to liberal partisans about the election, a sigh that beating Trump is not enough but all that can be done. Yes, Democrats are only an even-money shot, at best, to flip the Senate. And yes, even if they succeed, Mitch “Grim Reaper” McConnell can obstruct the majority with the filibuster, and it would not be up to the next president, but the 50th senator ideologically, someone like Joe Manchin or Kyrsten Sinema, to agree to change the Senate rules to eliminate the 60-vote threshold for legislation. (There’s always budget reconciliation, but that limited path goes through the same conservaDems.)But this reality does not have to inspire progressive anguish. Anyone telling you that a Democratic victory next November would merely signal four years of endless gridlock hasn’t thought about the possibilities laid out in this issue. And if you doubt the opportunity for strong executive action, let me direct your attention to Donald Trump.MAKE NO MISTAKE: Trump is an autocrat, more than willing to break the law to realize his campaign promises. His invocation of inherent, extreme executive power, egged on chiefly by Attorney General William Barr, is in fact dangerous, as former Representative Brad Miller lays out for us later in this issue. Trump has asserted the right to ignore Congress’s oversight function, reinterpret laws based on his own preferences, hide information from lawmakers and the public, promise pardons before illegal actions take place, appoint acting heads of federal agencies without advice and consent from the Senate, and raise the specter of emergency to follow through on his campaign promises.But in a significant number of cases, Trump’s pathway has sprung from a simple proposition: When Congress gives the executive branch authority, the president, you know, can actually use it.[…]THREE OTHER ARTICLES WORTH READINGWide Awake, by Rebecca Traister. The past four years have birthed a progressive movement so extraordinary it just might survive the forces that threaten its extinction.The Right-Wing Violence Trump Has Encouraged Has Deep Roots in American History, By Dolores Janiewski and Chad Pearson. The far-right violence that Donald Trump has stoked has deep roots in US history. Kicking him from office won’t change that — but it would deal a blow to right-wing vigilantism. The South Has Already Changed, by Adam Harris. Jaime Harrison lost to Lindsey Graham but expanded Democrats’ vision of what’s possible in the Deep South.TOP COMMENTSQUOTATION“In a democracy, someone who fails to get elected to office can always console himself with the thought that there was something not quite fair about it.” ~~Thucydides, History of the Peloponnesian War (411 BCE)TWEET OF THE DAYxNow seems like a good time to remind Trump appointees that destroying federal records is a crime. And it’ll be easier than you think to prove you did it.— Walter Shaub (@waltshaub) November 4, 2020BLAST FROM THE PAST- Advertisement – Certainly, a truly democratic, socially liberal, non-aggressive Iranian government that puts a high value on human rights would be a welcome change from the brutal one now in charge. While Iran has some of the trappings of democracy, it’s a profoundly constrained one riven by corruption that favors the clerical elite, holds large numbers of political prisoners, engages in torture and other brutality, and has a long record of human rights abuses, one of the targets being gay people. It was obvious from the election protests in 2009 that many Iranians would like to see a different kind of government. For each one of the thousands of protesters who dared confront Iran’s pernicious religious zealots in the street, for every Neda Agha-Soltan murdered by government henchmen, there no doubt were dozens silently cheering them on from home but fearful to join the opposition. They deserve better.As do the Saudis. Yet neither Pompeo nor Trump are making any noises about sanctioning the royal autocracy of that kingdom. It doesn’t take any imagination to figure out why. David E. Sanger at The New York Times reports:
Thirty-seven percent of the survey participants were entrepreneurs, 32 percent were employees, 13 percent informal workers and the remaining 18 percent were public servants, including soldiers and police officers.Read also: Greater Jakartans show low awareness of physical distancing measures despite PSBB: SurveyTransportation and parking management head Khairul Rizal of the Bandung Transportation Agency, who was in charge of the PSBB Survey, said that the survey was a randomized roadside interview. Random motorists were asked to participate in the survey as well as answer written questions from the Bandung Planning, Research and Development Agency.“Based on the survey results, 75 percent of the respondents spend more than six hours on average outside their homes every day, while the remaining respondents stay outdoors for two hours or less,” Rizal said in a statement on Tuesday.The PSBB in Bandung ended on Tuesday. Mayor Oded M. Danial has decided not to apply for an extension and instead wait for the end of the province-wide PSBB on May 20. On Tuesday, the city of Bandung recorded 235 confirmed cases with 35 deaths. West Java is the second-hardest hit province in the country after Jakarta, with at least 1,300 confirmed cases and 87 deaths as of Tuesday. (vny)Topics : Many people are venturing out of their homes in Bandung, West Java, despite the large-scale social restrictions (PSBB) because they fear losing their jobs more than they fear contracting COVID-19, a recent city survey has found.The survey, which canvassed 310 passersby at eight different locations in the city, found that 62 percent of respondents had ventured out of their homes because they were afraid of losing their jobs. Meanwhile, 26 percent of respondents said they had come into the city because they were worried that their incomes would fall if they stayed at home.Only 10 percent of respondents said they were afraid of contracting the coronavirus, while a mere 2 percent said they were afraid of dying of COVID-19.
Ruth Ann Payne, 59, of Utica, IN. and Cross Plains, IN. passed away Wednesday, February 3, 2016.She was born Monday, December 31, 1956 in Moores Hill, Indiana, daughter of the late Norman Hizer and the late Amanda Stamper James.Ruth worked as a Iron Worker for Union Local #70.She loved to crochet, everyone in the family has an afghan. Ruth was a free spirit, she loved the outdoors and was very in tune with nature. She enjoyed camping, boating, gardening, flowers, motorcycle riding and the water, especially the wave runner. Family time, especially with the grandchildren and her precious dogs Abby & Bella, was very special to her. Her dog Peanut, who preceded her in death, even rode motorcycles and went boating with Tom and Ruth.Surviving are her husband, Thomas Payne of Cross Plains, IN; daughters, Melina Ann Messer (David Holcomb), VA, Deena Collins (Matt Oelker) of Manchester, IN; siblings, Bill Hizer, Linda (Charles) Jenkins, Edwina (Brian) Lanphier, Caroline “Sue” (Jimmy) Love, David (Kim) Hizer, Shirley (late Butch) Walston, Edwin (Flo) James, Anita (Joe) Rich; Grandchildren, Cerina Mae, Sabrina Marie, David Shelton III, and Joseph Darrel Holcomb and Sean Allen and Kendra Kay Collins.She was preceded in death by son, Shawn Randall Messer.Friends will be received 12:00 – 3:00 PM, Saturday, February 6, 2016 at the Rullman Hunger Funeral Home, Aurora, Indiana.Services will be held at the Funeral Home, at 3:00 pm with Pastor Charles Hill officiating.Contributions in lieu of flowers may be made to P.A.W.S. Please call the funeral home office at (812) 926-1450 and we will notify the family of your donation with a card.Visit: www.rullmans.com