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Friday, July 17, 2015

The Daily Drift

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Obama Drops The Hammer And Vows To Veto All Republican Attempts To Block Iran Deal

obama will veto republican block of iran deal
President Obama didn’t just threaten to veto the disapproval resolution of the Iran deal that the Republican-misled Congress is likely to pass. The President vowed to veto ANY attempts by Republicans to block the deal that will prevent Iran from developing their own nuclear weapons.
The President said:
Put simply, no deal means a greater chance of more war in the Middle East. Moreover, we give nothing up by testing whether or not this problem can be solved peacefully. If, in a worst-case scenario, Iran violates the deal, the same options that are available to me today will be available to any U.S. President in the future. And I have no doubt that 10 or 15 years from now, the person who holds this office will be in a far stronger position with Iran further away from a weapon and with the inspections and transparency that allow us to monitor the Iranian program.

For this reason, I believe it would be irresponsible to walk away from this deal. But on such a tough issue, it is important that the American people and their representatives in Congress get a full opportunity to review the deal. After all, the details matter. And we’ve had some of the finest nuclear scientists in the world working through those details. And we’re dealing with a country — Iran — that has been a sworn adversary of the United States for over 35 years. So I welcome a robust debate in Congress on this issue, and I welcome scrutiny of the details of this agreement.

But I will remind Congress that you don’t make deals like this with your friends. We negotiated arms control agreements with the Soviet Union when that nation was committed to our destruction. And those agreements ultimately made us safer.
I am confident that this deal will meet the national security interest of the United States and our allies. So I will veto any legislation that prevents the successful implementation of this deal.
We do not have to accept an inevitable spiral into conflict. And we certainly shouldn’t seek it. And precisely because the stakes are so high, this is not the time for politics or posturing. Tough talk from Washington does not solve problems. Hard-nosed diplomacy, leadership that has united the world’s major powers offers a more effective way to verify that Iran is not pursuing a nuclear weapon.

Republicans are already blowing a gasket over a deal that they haven’t seen. Lindsey Graham is calling the deal a “declaration of war on Israel.” Republicans are vowing to block the deal, but the reality is that they can do nothing to stop it. Because of the way that the approval resolution vote is structured, Republicans need super-majorities in both the House and the Senate to override any Obama veto of their disapproval.
President Obama’s remarks this morning were exactly what Congressional Democrats needed to hear. What they will be voting on isn’t a choice between a “good” deal, and a “bad” deal as Republicans like to frame it. The choice is between the path to war and the path to peace. The President was correct. No deal means that Republicans still have their top argument for war with Iran. This deal takes that argument away from wingnuts and makes it impossible for them to argue for the war in the Middle East that they have been dreaming of.
Notice that Obama stated that he would veto any legislation that tries to block the deal. The President went beyond the approval/disapproval process and warned Republicans that any bill that blocks the deal will be vetoed. Presumably, this would include attempts to add language blocking the deal to unrelated legislation and appropriations bills.
Republicans can do nothing to stop the deal. Obama has the Democratic votes to win. All Republicans can do is fearmonger and make empty promises about actions that will most certainly fail.

Republicans Crushed As Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders Support Obama On Iran Deal

obama and congressional liberals kill corporate tax cuts
Republicans who are trying to stop President Obama’s Iran deal suffered an immediate crushing blow as influential Senate liberals Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders both made statements supporting the President’s diplomatic efforts.
In a statement, Sen. Sanders said, “I congratulate President Obama, Secretary Kerry and the leaders of other major nations for producing a comprehensive agreement to prevent Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon. This is a victory for diplomacy over saber-rattling and could keep the United States from being drawn into another never-ending war in the Middle East. I look forward to learning more about the complex details of this agreement to make sure that it is effective and strong.”
Sen. Warren tweeted a statement that focused on the need for diplomacy:
Diplomacy is our best hope of ending the threat of a nuclear-armed Iran, far better than the alternative of escalating tensions & war.

.@POTUS, @JohnKerry & @ErnestMoniz deserve great credit for working with our allies to reach a negotiated solution without military action.

I look forward to reviewing the details of this Iran agreement to determine whether they are tough, verifiable, and effective.
Liberals such as Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren are highly influential in the Senate Democratic caucus. Senate Democrats have moved left since they lost the majority, and they are a much more liberal group. Sanders and Warren both echoed President Obama’s language about the choice on this deal being between war and peace. It is the liberals in Senate who will vote to sustain President Obama’s veto if the Senate passes a resolution of disapproval.
Some in the Beltway media, such as NBC’s Chuck “Wrong Way” Todd are trying to create drama by suggesting that Democrats could go against President Obama on this deal, but as long as Obama has the support of Senate liberals like Warren and Sanders along with the always influential Harry Reid, he will win and overcome Republican opposition to the international agreement that stops Iran’s nuclear weapons program.
As long as the liberals support President Obama, Republicans will suffer a crushing defeat as their quest for more war in the Middle East could be dealt a crippling blow by the power of diplomacy and the overwhelming desire for peace. Liberals have the power in this debate, and two of the biggest liberals in the Senate are signaling their support for President Obama.

Boehner Wigs Out Over Iran Deal And Issues Completely Meaningless Threats

John Boehner
Boehner (R-OH) lost his mind after President Obama’s announcement of a landmark deal with Iran, saying “We will do everything we can to stop” a bad deal that paves the way to a nuclear Iran.
Boehner’s written statement it’s clear that he has decided — in spite of the President assuring him otherwise — that the deal does not require verification:
“At the outset of these talks, the Obama administration said it would secure an agreement that affirmed Iran does not have a right to enrich and permanently dismantles the infrastructure of its nuclear programs. It said that sanctions would not be lifted until Iran met concrete, verifiable standards. And if these terms were not met, the president promised he would walk away.”
Boehner announced that in spite of world leaders saying the deal will make the world safer, he, who hasn’t seen it, knows that it will likely “fuel a nuclear arms race around the world”:
“The American people and our allies were counting on President Obama to keep his word. Instead, the president has abandoned his own goals. His ‘deal’ will hand Iran billions in sanctions relief while giving it time and space to reach a break-out threshold to produce a nuclear bomb – all without cheating. Instead of making the world less dangerous, this ‘deal’ will only embolden Iran – the world’s largest sponsor of terror – by helping stabilize and legitimize its regime as it spreads even more violence and instability in the region. Instead of stopping the spread of nuclear weapons in the Middle East, this deal is likely to fuel a nuclear arms race around the world.
Here’s the part where Boehner pretended that he has a say in the deal:
“The House of Representatives will review every detail of this agreement very closely, but I won’t support any agreement that jeopardizes the safety of the American people and all who value freedom and security. This isn’t about Republicans versus Democrats. It’s about right and wrong. And we will fight a bad deal that is wrong for our national security and wrong for our country.”
The Iran deal was based on two years of negotiations, which suggests that diplomacy has a place in foreign policy after all, since it achieved what years of hostility could not. This, of course, seems to be the real problem. Republicans don’t believe in diplomacy.
Sen. Barbara Boxer’s statement points out the real problem here, “If this agreement is what the Administration says it is, it is a major, historic diplomatic breakthrough.” Yes. We can’t have diplomatic breakthroughs because that would ruin the credibility of the chicken hawks.
The other point that Boxer’s statement makes is that no one has seen the deal yet. How can Boehner know it sucks when he hasn’t seen it yet? In his televised statement, Boehner prefaced his disagreement of the deal with “… in my view, from I know thus far, is unacceptable…”
From what he knows so far. Which is…?
… But that was enough to disagree totally and to say that “this deal is likely to fuel a nuclear arms race around the world.”
No matter that not only President Obama but other world leaders say that the deal is a good one, with David Cameron saying it “… secures our fundamental aim, to keep Iran from developing a nuclear weapon” and it will “make our world a safer place.” Plus, Obama explained  that the deal wasn’t built on trust but on “verification”.
Republicans have yet to offer up any specifics on their alternative deal. But they are very good at trolling, shouting and hysterically warning that Obama is ruining the world. Not just the U.S. anymore, but the entire world. They said affordable healthcare was going to kill babies and grandparents and ruin America. It turned out to be the opposite.
Not once have their hysterical predictions about President Obama been proven right in seven years, but hey. There’s still time.
Once again Republicans screamed and threw tantrums from the sidelines, but never offered a real solution with specifics. Boehner knows that President Obama has vowed to veto any Republican attempts to block the Iran deal. So basically, Bohner is in what is a very familiar position for him of posturing and blustering for the cameras — even as he knows he won’t be doing anything about anything.
This is Boehner’s basic approach to being Speaker — he does nothing, and then blames Obama when the chaos becomes too enormous for the press to ignore. This time, the entire world is going to collapse and it will be Obama’s fault for using diplomacy where war is the obvious answer. In the Republican view, war is better than diplomacy, even if war doesn’t work and actually makes the problem worse (see Iraq).

San Francisco Official To Fox News: ‘You’re Not A Reporter… Fox News Is Not Real News’

San Francisco Official To Fox News: ‘You’re Not A Reporter… Fox News Is Not Real News’ (VIDEO)
No, they’re not, and it’s about time more people told them to their face.

House Republicans Are Outraged That Obama Is Too Merciful

So, let's get this straight ... being merciful is attacking their 'leadership' and not to be allowed but their ATTACKING the president and the nation is all fine and dandy? OK. we think we have it figured out, now.

A National Outrage: Your Tax Dollars Pay For Damaging Religiously Based Crisis Pregnancy Centers

A yearlong investigation into crisis pregnancy centers reveals a network of anti-abortion, anti-birth control, and anti-sex extremists that is not only funded with your tax dollars, but is…
Image from Cosmopolitan, Aug 2015
You probably think of people who are against abortion, birth control, and premarital sex as being extremists. Yes, they’re fighting at every turn to challenge Roe V Wade, but they are only whittling it down. But the main right to make our own medical choices is Constitutionally protected so everything is okay.
… But it’s not.
In Cosmopolitan’s August issue, Meaghan Winter revealed alarming results from a yearlong investigation into crisis pregnancy centers that show a network of anti-abortion, anti-birth control, and anti-sex extremists that is not only funded with your tax dollars, but is often the only option.
Winter writes, “… behind the scenes, an orchestrated network of donors, lawyers, lobbyists, and state representatives supports the individual centers.”
It’s not just in red states, either. This is happening all over the country, and you are paying for it with tens of millions of federal and state tax dollars. Here’s one young woman’s experience at Care Net center “that advertised free ultrasounds alongside information on ’emergency contraception’ and ‘abortion education’.”
As told to Cosmopolitan, “Nicole” was trying to get an ultrasound so she could then travel hundreds of miles to get the morning after pill:
Inside, a receptionist behind a counter instructed Nicole to provide a urine sample in the bathroom. Then a nurse and a younger woman, about Nicole’s age, brought her to a small room with a couch. For 45 minutes, they showed her Bible verses and pamphlets on adoption and an embryo’s development. Nicole says, “The nurse really, really slowed down during the fetal pain part. She said, ‘Here are the fingertips. The baby feels everything you’re feeling.'” They told Nicole having an abortion might complicate future pregnancies and cause suicidal thoughts — both common myths. This is Bullshit, Nicole kept thinking, but you’re trying to make me think it’s true.
During the ultrasound, the nurse said the images weren’t clear and she needed to do a transvaginal scan. “She didn’t explain anything or say, ‘We’re going to stick this cone inside you,'” Nicole says, agitated. The nurse displayed the embryo on a screen, pointed to its features, and printed the images. The younger women prayed over Nicole and asked to be invited to her baby shower. The next week, ultrasound results in hand, Nicole drove more than six hours, following a two-lane highway across Wyoming and staying overnight in a hotel, to reach an abortion provider in Denver.
These places are the only place to turn:
Every year, thousands of women like Nicole seek help at what appear to be secular medical clinics but are actually 'christian' anti-abortion centers. Throughout the United States, there are at least 3,000 crisis pregnancy centers, many of which belong to two religious anti-abortion organizations—Care Net and Heartbeat International. Some women arrive at those centers in search of 'christian' brainwashing or free diapers, but the vast majority are looking for professional advice to help them navigate unplanned pregnancies.
Increasingly, pregnancy centers are what’s available. Around the country, access to abortion has eroded dramatically. As abortion regulations shutter medical clinics offering the full range of options, a woman facing an unplanned pregnancy finds herself in a very different landscape, one in which a pregnancy center is her most visible, most affordable—and sometimes the only—place to turn.
How did we get here with a Democratic President who supports women’s health and just found a way to ensure that Hobby Lobby decision wouldn’t mean that women no longer had access to birth control through their insurance? Not only have Republicans been pushing anti-liberty bills in states across the country, especially since 2010 when they really picked up steam, but our Congress has aided and abetted them. Sure, Congress is unable to pass immigration reform and they can’t manage a jobs bill, but they always have time to restrict women’s rights.
Winter explained:
In 2013, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services awarded the center a federal grant of $352,125 to teach abstinence education in public schools. Over the years, government funding for abstinence programs has aided the mushrooming of pregnancy centers. Despite proposals by the Obama administration to reduce funding, Congress has continued and even increased it in recent years, explains Monica Rodriguez, president of the nonprofit Sexuality Information and Education Council of the United States. This spring, Congress has already set aside $75 million for the latest abstinence-only-until marriage program — an increase of 50 percent. The House budget proposed in June would double the program that funds Options Pregnancy Center, while eliminating all funding for health centers that provide birth control.
Of course, the only way to reduce abortions really is to provide birth control. Abstinence Only doesn’t work, and there is no better proof of this than their spokesperson Bristol Palin, who is on her second premarital pregnancy. 2015 began with 332 anti-choice provisions in just three months.
It’s absolutely an alarming and profound theft of liberty for our tax dollars to fund a religious delusion against a Constitutionally protected right. That young women with few resources are forced to drive out of state to get a safe abortion, after undergoing a shame and guilt inducing lecture and invasive and unnecessary medical procedures, is outrageous.
No one is “pro-abortion”, but those who have though it through realize that in order to be pro-women’s liberty, we must ensure that women have the final say over their bodies. We must protect the right of each citizen to make their own medical decisions and be in charge of their own bodies. The precedent otherwise is unthinkable.
We try to prevent abortion by doing the one thing that works– making birth control accessible. Shaming women by lying to them isn’t working. But everyone already knows that. And yet, our tax dollars are funding the opposite of “religious freedom”. This country was founded on the principle that we would be free from religion if we chose, and that religious extremists would not get into power to make law for good reason.

Jobs, taxes, unions and poverty ...

A woman's mind is blown -- and not in a good way (Shutterstock)
Bernie Sanders realizes that runaway inequality is a critical issue. How come the other candidates don't?

Americans angrily respond to Jebya’s call to work longer hours

Image: Short order cook, Austin, TX (Flickr Creative Commons)
“People need to work longer hours and, through their productivity, gain more income for their families,” said Republican pretender hopeful Jebya last week. Not everyone agreed.

Jebya Equates Donald Trump To President Obama, Claims He Will Unify America

The Wingnut Dog Whistle Buried In Scott Walker’s Announcement Speech

Scott Walker Says Poverty Pay Is A Living Wage

It is likely that Walker's idea that poverty wages are living wages came directly from the Kochs, who see American workers as peasants…
Scott Walker
It never fails that some Republican announces they are running for the highest office in the land because their particular supreme being whispered in their ear that they should be pretender. In Scott Walker’s case, his demigods, the Koch brothers, anointed him a couple of months ago as their next big purchase in their drive to takeover America. However, just prior to Walker’s announcement that he was running for  pretender, he claimed that it was dog, not the Kochs, who planned for him to be pretender.
The Koch surrogate Walker said, “My relationship with dog drives every major decision in my life. Each day I prayed and then took time to read from the bible and from a devotional named Jesus Calling leading up to my announcement that I would run for pretender. With a lot of prayer I am certain: This is dog’s plan for me.” If Walker is driven by private utterances from dog, and jesus calling, then it is curious why he parrots his real dog, Charles Koch’s reason for creating a nation living in poverty.
Walker said, “America needs new fresh leadership and big bold ideas from outside of Washington. We enacted big, bold reforms and took power out of the hands of big government special interests and gave it to the hardworking taxpayers.” One of the “big bold ideas” Walker wants to bring from Wisconsin is right out of one of his puppeteers, Charles Koch, who said in a self-promotion commercial that Americans earning poverty wages need to shut up and stop complaining. The uber-rich billionaire said that a family of four earning $34,000 annually belong to the richest one-percent of income earners in the world. Scott Walker did Koch one better and claims that that Wisconsin and America’s minimum wage of $7.25 an hour is a living wage, and low-income workers in Wisconsin have nothing to complain about.
Hidden within Wisconsin’s last minute budget, besides eliminating retail and factory workers’ right to one day off per week, is the elimination of the state’s 100-year-old definition of a “living wage.” According to the century-old Wisconsin statute, “Every wage paid or agreed to be paid by any employer to any employee shall be not less than a living wage. A living wage must provide minimum comfort, decency, physical and moral well-being.” Under Walker’s new rule, not only is the state’s Department of Workforce Development stripped of all power to investigate complaints that an employee is not being paid a “living wage” according to the Wisconsin labor statute, Walker replaced all references to ‘living wage‘ with ‘minimum wage‘ throughout Wisconsin’s laws.
Walker’s not-so-stealthy maneuver was to counter about 100 low-income Wisconsin workers’ lawsuit against  him for refusing to even read, or consider, their complaint that the current state minimum wage of $7.25 an hour is not a living wage. For the record, a worker earning $7.25 hourly brings in a whopping $14,500 annually. The federal poverty line for a family of three is $20,090 annually, and for an individual it is $15,930. Not only is Wisconsin’s, or America’s, minimum wage not anyone’s definition of a living wage, it is well below a poverty wage. In 2013, the number of Americans in poverty earning what Walker calls a “living wage” was 45.3 million. Tragically, many of those tens-of-millions were holding down more than one “living wage” job, and it is exactly what Walker promotes in Wisconsin and the Kochs believe is world-leading extravagance.
It is likely that Walker’s idea that poverty wages are living wages came directly from the Kochs who have no hesitation comparing hardworking, highly-productive, and poverty-stricken Americans earning poverty wages with peasants living in still-developing third world nations such as China and India. It is important to note that the great majorities in those nations live in absolute squalor and barely subsist from day to day; exactly what the Kochs plan for American labor.
Walker was also parroting another member of the Koch cabal, billionaire CEO Bud Konheim, who last year echoed Charles Koch’s claim that Americans earning poverty wages are wealthy. Konheim said, “We’ve got a country that the poverty level is wealth in 99% of the rest of the world, so we’re talking about woe is me, woe is us, woe is this. The guy that’s making, oh my dog, he’s making $35,000 a year, why don’t we try that out in India or some countries we can’t even name. China, anyplace, the guy is wealthy.” It is little shock that Scott Walker bested Koch and Konheim by claiming that in Wisconsin, a worker earning minimum wage, $14,500 annually, is earning at a “level of pay needed to provide ‘minimum comfort, decency, and physical and moral well-being.”
In America, a family of three would have to earn at least $48,000 annually just to afford the basic necessities to survive such as food, housing, and healthcare according to the Economic Policy Institute. Yet another organization not owned and operated by the Koch brothers, the Working Poor Families Project, estimates that the required minimum income to meet the most basic survival needs in America is $45,000 annually. As an aside and to illustrate just how many Americans are barely earning enough to meet basic survival needs, the nation’s median household income is approximately $51,000, or about three times what a Wisconsin “living wage” earner barely survives on.
There are myriad reasons to despise men like Scott Walker, but at the top of the list has to be his assault on hard-working Wisconsin residents living on less-than-poverty wages. There is a good reason why the Koch brothers anointed Scott Walker as their designated surrogate to lead the nation, and chief among them is his great showing in attacking Wisconsin’s labor force. Walker, like his Koch masters, has made no secret that he has no use for, and will abolish, the minimum wage that he has designated a “living wage.” Just because he replaced the word “living” with “minimum,” it doesn’t mean that Wisconsin workers stuck earning $7.25 an hour are not mired in poverty which is precisely what Walker and the Koch brothers plan for 98% of Americans.

Walker Sues Feds For Right To Shame The Poor

Walker Sues Feds For Right To Shame The Poor

Delicious Irony: Donald Trump Could Be Replaced By George Lopez On Celebrity Apprentice

Image via Facebook
In an ironic twist that is sure to annoy Donald Trump, NBC is considering naming Mexican-American comedian George Lopez as the new host of Celebrity Apprentice.

Fox hack proves, yet again, what idiots they are

Fox hack: People love Trump because he won't let 'illegal aliens come and murder our women'
Classifying those troglodytes that 'love' Trump as 'people' is being way too overly generous

Civics 101 Fail

Rick Womick (R-Murfreesboro), bashed Tennessee's Bill Haslam for “bowing down” to the Supreme Court’s ruling that state bans on same-sex marriage are unconstitutional.

The Oklahoma Republican Cabal’s Deeply Offensive Facebook Post

Oklahoma Republicans: Sorry you ‘misinterpreted’ our Facebook post comparing poor kids to wild animals

Nope, there has been no 'Misinterpretation' at all - we all know what you said and meant perfectly.
Randy Brogdon (Facebook)
The state Republican cabal inaccurately claimed in a post Monday that food stamps distributed by the federal government were at an all-time high, and then pointed out that the National Park Service prohibited the feeding of animals.

Texas Wingnut Bigots Try To Ban LGBT Library Books And Fail Hard

Watch Texas Conservative Bigots Try To Ban LGBT Library Books And Fail Hard  (VIDEO) Anti-LGBT wingnuts received an epic smackdown in Hood County, Texas, on Tuesday. Radical religio-wingnut 'christians' showed up to the Hood County Commissioner’s...

Texas Scumbags Threaten To Desecrate Planned Muslim Cemetery With Pig’s Blood

Texas Scumbags Threaten To Desecrate Planned Muslim Cementary With Pig’s Blood Wingnut Texans like to fancy themselves to be the “true” America. Fierce, independent and all about everything America stands for.
The problem is they are most definitely not any sort of American, they are all empty bluster, and completely dependent on their handlers nor are they about anything America stands for.