Friday, February 3, 2017

Last Call For Anti-Immigration Nation, Con't

Trump's base loves his Muslim ban.  Everyone else hates it because it's illegal, immoral and unenforceable without a massive cadre of brownshirts, but hey, we don't exactly live in a representative democracy these days, do we?  So first, the good news from Greg Sargent:

A new Gallup poll brings some encouraging news. Solid majorities of Americans disapprove of all of the major moves on immigration that President Trump has made since taking office:
  • 60 percent of Americans disapprove of Trump’s call for moving forward with a wall on the Mexican border, versus only 38 percent who approve.
  • 58 percent disapprove of Trump’s indefinite suspension of entry by Syrian refugees, versus only 36 percent who approve.
  • 55 percent disapprove of Trump’s order of a temporary ban on entry for people from seven Muslim-majority countries, versus only 42 percent who approve.
However, it turns out there’s a deep divide along educational lines on all of these proposals.


I asked the good folks at Gallup for a further breakdown of the numbers. The result: Non-college whites — who supported Trump overwhelmingly — approve of all three measures, while large majorities of college-educated whites disapprove of them:

This reprises a divide that we saw during the election, in which Trump over-performed among non-college whites, while under-performing among white college graduates relative to past GOP nominees. 
These numbers suggest that the first big moves of the Trump presidency, if anything, may be deepening this cultural and educational schism. Even as massive protests have erupted in major cities in response to Trump’s new policies, with protesters rallying behind the besieged minorities targeted by them, reporters from the Associated Press and Reuters talked to Trump voters and found them either unmoved by the commotion or actively supportive of what he’s doing. These new Gallup numbers would seem to confirm that this split is particularly pronounced along educational lines among white voters.

Which is the entire point.  Trump knows that any red meat he feeds his base multiplies his power and forces the rest of the GOP to go along or risk being devoured.  Even if the courts find the order unconstitutional, Trump wins and makes the case that the judiciary is the problem, not him.

He can't lose, because he's bet on America being full of racist assholes who want to keep their political power through racist assholery..  That's a bet that's paid off time and time again for more than 400 years, guys. Why stop now?

After all, if anyone does dissent, we know what will happen to them and where they will end up, as commenter Prup pointed out earlier this afternoon.

“Even as confusion, internal dissent and widespread condemnation greeted President Trump’s travel ban and crackdown on refugees this weekend, senior White House aides say they are are only getting started,” the Los Angeles Times reported. “Trump’s top advisors on immigration, including chief strategist Steve Bannon and senior advisor Stephen Miller, see themselves as launching a radical experiment to fundamentally transform how the U.S. decides who is allowed into the country and to block a generation of people who, in their view, won’t assimilate into American society.” 
How broadly radical their vision is can be seen in “Enhancing Public Safety in the Interior of the United States,” the companion order to the travel ban, which lists aliens for “prioritize[d] removal.” It includes those who “have committed acts that constitute a chargeable criminal offense,” and also aliens who have “abused any program related to receipt of public benefits.”

In other words, some targets can be deported because a DHS agent believes the person has broken a law of any kind, “regardless of whether that person has been charged with a crime,” as one analyst put it. And what does “abusing” a welfare-oriented program mean? Judges and lawyers could be fouled up with that matter alone for years. 
Other candidates for the Trump roundup include aliens who have made “a willful misrepresentation in connection with any official matter or application before a government agency.” 
What is “any official matter”? 
“If these items were not broad enough,” noted Walter Pincus, the venerated former Washington Post national security reporter, “the final category for being detained for deportation is ‘in the judgment of an immigration officer, [the aliens] otherwise pose a risk to public safety or national security.’” 
“If ever a category encouraged racial profiling, that is it,” Pincus wrote for the Cypher Brief, a new publication by intelligence professionals covering national security issues.

Millions of Americans think this will just be used on the people they call "illegals".  It will be used against anyone who dares to stand up to Trump, eventually.  The whole point of this "criminal justice" reform is that in order to make money on these detention facilities, they have to be kept full.

They will find people to put in them.

History has taught us this again and again.

An Endemic Epidemic

The opioid epidemic in the Ohio Valley area of Ohio, Kentucky and Indiana, and neighboring West Virginia is about as bad as it comes in the US, and 2017 promises to be the worst year yet if January's grisly statistics are anything to go by so far.

Last year, it was refrigerated trucks. Now, it’s “temporary storage” in funeral homes. The Coroner’s Office in Montgomery County, Ohio, has been so overwhelmed by the death toll of the raging opioid epidemic that it has had to turn to makeshift morgues to keep up.

We’re running at full capacity,” Kenneth Betz, director of the coroner’s office, told The New York Times in a phone interview. “We’ve never experienced this volume of accidental drug overdoses in our history. We now call funeral homes immediately," he said.

So far in 2017—just 33 days into the year—the Coroner’s Office has already handled 163 accidental overdose deaths. That’s more than half the yearly totals of overdose deaths from 2015 and 2016. In fact, in the last decade the number of yearly overdose deaths has quadrupled in Ohio and surpassed deaths from car crashes.

And the state is not alone—in fact, it may not even be the worst off. West Virginia had the highest rate of drug overdose deaths in 2015, reaching 41.5 per 100,000, according to the CDC. Ohio came in tied for third with Kentucky, at 29.9 per 100,000. New Hampshire was second with 34.3 per 100,000.

Those deaths and the increases are driven by widespread addiction to opioid pain killers.

The rest of the country, too, has seen dramatic impacts of the epidemic, particularly in the northeast and some in the south. The CDC reports that 91 people a day die from an opioid overdose in the US.
That's right, so far in Ohio in 2017 more people have died from opioid drug overdoses than car accidents.  Montgomery County is where Dayton is, just north of Cincy, and it's being ravaged so far this year.

Now consider two planned actions of the Trump regime so far: one to slash 80% of FDA regulations including on prescription drugs, and one to punish sanctuary cities by cutting federal law enforcement grants for programs like domestic abuse prevention and drug rehab.  Both of these would almost certainly help make the opioid crisis worse across the country.

But these states overwhelmingly voted for Trump and the GOP.  And Trump's policies will assuredly mean more people are suffering.  Yes, the crisis has gotten bad under the Obama years.  But I can already tell you that Trump's planned actions will do nothing to help.

The problem will only get worse.

The Bowling Green (Made-Up) Massacre

At this point we have a regime in charge of America trying to create a Reichstag fire event and they're not smart enough to be able to spell "Reichstag" correctly.

One of President Donald Trump's top White House advisers referred to a terror attack that never happened in an MSNBC interview that aired on Thursday night. 
Kellyanne Conway suggested that the so-called "Bowling Green Massacre" in Bowling Green, Kentucky, was one of the catalysts for Trump's executive order banning nationals from seven Muslim-majority states like Iraq. 
There was no such attack in the US. 
During her interview with MSNBC's Chris Matthews, Conway described the false incident as two Iraqi refugees having come to the US, becoming radicalized, and masterminding the nonexistent attack. Conway offered no evidence to back up her claims and flatly suggested that "most people don't know ... because it didn't get covered."
Neither Conway, nor a White House spokesperson immediately responded to a request for comment. 
The only incident surrounding Iraqi refugees and Bowling Green, Kentucky, in recent history was a 2011 case in which two Iraqi nationals were indicted on federal charges on accusations that they tried to provide material support to terrorists and to al Qaeda in Iraq. 
The FBI's 2011 press release said that the two men, Waad Ramadan Alwan, 30, and Mohanad Shareef Hammadi, 23, were former residents of Iraq who lived in Bowling Green at the time of their arrests. Alwan was sentenced to 40 years in federal prison in and Hammadi received a life term in 2013, the FBI said
Despite Conway's allegations, there was no massacre in Bowling Green, and, according to the FBI's statement on the matter, there was no plan for a terror attack in that city.

I mean what kinda of obvious nonsense is this?  An administration spokesperson is on the news citing a terrorist attack that never happened as proof that we need the regime's unconstitutional policies to remain in effect.  This is completely off the map, guys. It's fake news at its utmost.

Conway's game is obvious to the point of derisions, but how long before the "Bowling Green Massacre" somehow becomes "real" in the eyes of Trump and his nutjobs?  Will the media dare to say "We're no longer booking her as she's a complete liar?"

Where we go from here will say a lot about whether or not America survives.


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