The Republican’s offer of 600 B as a compromise should be considered with appropriate solemnity, and a counter offer of 2.0 T should be made by President Biden. The President and his spokespersons should highlight to all Americans that are in food lines, homeless, cold, desperate and disillusioned that it is Republicans that feel enough has been done. Every governor and mayor across the land should speak to the needs of the states to provide resources to get vaccines to the people. TO PREVENT FURTHER DEATH of innocent people.

West Virginia has the lowest average family income in the country, if I read the articles properly. Manchin and his family make millions off of energy holdings every year. He is a two term governor and now must be in his 3rd term as senator. So what indeed has he done for his people? Protected them from having their guns taken away, from having transgender bathrooms, gay marriage? Not of course improving school systems or health care, or curtailing mining practices that destroy state resources. Not sending new generations into mines that destroy lungs.

Biden and his team should go to every red state to hold seminars and press briefings weekly. Press the issues to the real people who are suffering. Put it in the face of every republican voter.

Biden and Harris should invite Manchin and Sinema to tea. They should also invite Stacey Abrams.

Finally I wish again to call attention to the fact that we will see the death toll of INNOCENT AMERICANS reach 500 THOUSAND by the end of February!

This is NOT an ecomomic crisis. This is a NATURAL DISASTER causing and ecomomic crisis. We cannot spend ENOUGH MONEY FAST ENOUGH to fight covid. There is not any room for rational debate.

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This thing that we have been living with for the past four years is not over. I cannot understand the thinking that drives people to support this - it is utter insanity to me. But they will not go quietly into the night and I fear our country is in further danger of being ripped apart by this hate that walks among us. I never thought we would see this kind of evil in our country, in our lifetimes yet, here it is. Every bit as ugly as the evils we fought in WWII, if not worse. I don’t know how or where to run for safety but I also don’t know how to fight.

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"We want to work in good faith...,” the senators wrote. After years in which Republican senators refused to discuss bills with the Democrats, this is a change indeed."

So here I'll say it once again - the GOP's failure to miss the irony in this statement was laughable at one point. It's now contemptible. For Susan Collins, of all people (yes, I know she's HCR's senator) to express her "concerns" about unity while presenting a counterproposal cutting the president's by 66%, after not pushing McConnell to even create a COVID proposal months after the House has submitted one, is pure farce. From whence does her moral authority arise?

We all had high hopes that Trump's exit would signal a period of less contention, if not actual cooperation. Yet each day brings news of greater intransigence, of more attempts to continue Trump's dismantling of democratic processes and norms, of efforts to whitewash, downplay, and evade accountability for those efforts, including the sacking of Congress, and of preposterous behavior by elected officials who don't actually have any constructive political policy agenda.

To anthropomorphize the coronavirus, many in the GOP have themselves become a virus, the symptoms of which are an onset of malaise, tone deaf ears, choking the oxygen from the political collaboration needed to protect the nation's well-being, and generally weakening our system's immunity to corruption and authoritarianism.

We're in the heart of winter, a time Fauci and others feared would exacerbate the damage of coronavirus because we'd be closed in, because the annual flu virus would also be active, because we're tapped out on the isolation of social distancing. I went to Charleston SC this weekend for a golf trip. Golf has been a godsend this past year as it allowed the chance to get out of the house, to spend time with friends while maintaining safe distancesc from each other. We wore masks in the car, walked or took individual carts while playing, and generally taking the precautions we've been advised to take. We made one mistake. We went into the city to go to dinner. In an area where police have occasionally ticketed people for walking in public without a mask, the restaurants and bars were packed, not three slightest pretense of distancing aside from requiring a mask to enter. Once inside one was free to spread contagion. I'm a cancer patient with a lymphocyte count at 40% of normal, even two years in remission. This was an incredibly stupid action on my part. Midway through dinner my anxiety about the environment overcame my desire for a nice dinner with friends and I left. I'm kicking myself for letting my guard down. No symptoms (yet) but it's clear that given half a chance, Americans will want to put safety protocols behind us as fast as we can, telling ourselves most people recover from COVID quickly, or have no symptoms, or just "it's gonna be some other person" who gets sick.

Biden must act on measures which, according to HCR's column, are or would be popular despite the objections of certain Republicans. He must make clear that Trump-like obstructionism doesn't control the conversation anymore. He must prove Robert Reich's premise to be true, that “the real reason Republicans want to block Biden is they fear his plans will work.”

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Hope is the thing with feathers

That perches in the soul,

And sings the tune without the words,

And never stops at all,

And sweetest in the gale is heard;

And sore must be the storm

That could abash the little bird

That kept so many warm.

I've heard it in the chillest land,

And on the strangest sea;

Yet, never, in extremity,

It asked a crumb of me.

—Emily Dickinson

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Just think about this for for a moment ......

“In an article in The Guardian today, former U.S. Secretary of Labor Robert Reich dismissed Republican concerns about the national debt, noting that if they were worried about it, they could just tax the very wealthy. “‘The total wealth of America’s 660 billionaires has grown by… $1.1 [trillion] since the start of the pandemic, a 40% increase,’” he noted. Those billionaires could fund almost all of Biden’s proposal and still be as rich as they were before the pandemic hit”.

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“We must settle this question now – whether in a free government the minority have the right to break it up whenever they choose. If we fail, it will go far to prove the incapability of the people to govern themselves.”

-- Abraham Lincoln, 1861

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"Reich suggested that “[t]he real reason Republicans want to block Biden is they fear his plans will work.” A successful government response to coronavirus, the economic crisis, inequality, the climate crisis, and poverty would devastate modern-day Republicans’ insistence that the solution to every problem is tax cuts and private enterprise. If Biden’s plans succeed, Reich wrote, Americans’ faith in government, and in our democracy, will be restored.”

Private enterprise can only provide jobs to some Americans and a paycheck to some. Private enterprise is based on employing workers to produce profits for wealthy investors and company officers. Private enterprise has ALWAYS left behind far too many, and destroyed far too much of our natural splendor. Mother Earth and her species are dying a slow death.

Government is the only entity that can try to repair the waste left behind from private enterprise. Government pays for every single road in America (save for private roads on private land). Government pays for the education of our youth. The only entity in our Western societies that can repair and renew our broken society, from the excesses of private enterprise, is our government.

Private enterprise has ALWAYS fought the greater good of society, in attempts to hoard far more than any individual ever needs, or deserves. In Buddhism, the expression of the “hungry ghost” are beings with massive bellies and tiny throats, and there is never satisfaction. In Christianity, hell is living for oneself at the expense of others.

imho, Joe Biden and Democrats understand the underlying sickness of our society. We finally are beginning to see a glimpse of the prescription .... that private enterprise must serve the needs of each and every individual and our commons, NOT the other way around.

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The Republican Party, most of it anyway, is doubling down on the policy that cost it the White House and the Senate, and is openly, even agggressively, encouraging the mob-rule that gave us the Jan. 6th insurrection. They seem to have no agenda beyond putting Trump back in the White House.

This is a decent into madness, into destruction. Do they really think the rest of us, the popular majority, are just going to shrug our shoulders and think, "Oh well, American democracy was nice while it lasted, but now it's gone"? Trumpism inspires more who despise him to get to the polls than those who adore him. One would expect this trend to continue in spite of renewed Republican efforts to suppress voting.

Good for George W. Bush to come out from behind his easel to support Lynn Cheney. Whoever thought Dubya and a Cheney would be the welcome voice of sanity, but here we are. Hopefully both will inspire more Republicans to follow their heads and their hearts and stand up and spit in the face of the Trumpista mob.

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Robert Reich has it right. The Republicans don't want a Biden recovery and stimulus bill to work because it would destroy their beloved trickle down economics. If they get their way they will blame Biden for a slow recovery just like they did to Obama. Biden needs to stick to his plan of a $1.9 trillion stimulus package. His only compromise might be to increase it.

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Dems need to go big or go home.

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A profound summery, Professor Richardson – thank you for your work.

Two thoughts:

First, this excerpt from a sensible opinion piece in yesterday’s Washington Post:

Opinion: Republicans should police their own, then we can talk unity

Jennifer Rubin

Washington Post January 31, 2021

“I offer three suggestions. First, Democrats need to make the Trump-hugging McCarthy and the loony Greene the faces of the Republican Party. That’s not even a stretch; they are the essence of the MAGA party. If that is what voters in swing or even Republican-leaning states want, they should have no doubts about what they are supporting. Second, a nationwide voter registration effort may help duplicate organic movements we have seen in Arizona, for example, where some 10,000 Republicans changed parties. Third, Democrats should keep in mind how Stacey Abrams flipped a red state: Painstaking organizing work. They need to duplicate that effort in states such as North Carolina and Ohio (which will have open Senate seats in 2022). They need more Democratic voters to get more Democrats in Congress.

There is no unity with anti-democratic conspiracy-mongers and those who welcome white nationalists into their fold. Forget unity. Save democracy. Then we can talk about unity.”

And second, President Biden should not be lured into believing the Trumplicans have any intention of furthering his agenda. Their sweet promises of compromise are nothing more than bait, a Circe-esque song that ends badly. I don’t think he will. Biden drank the Moly as Vice President when his predecessor’s ambitious plans were repeatedly dashed on the hard floor of the Senate.

What the Trumplicans are offering is not a compromise – it is a Sophie’s Choice: Adopt our plan or we will kill everything you hold dear. Of course, by engaging with them, he will almost certainly lose everything he holds dear.

What they have not considered, is that this time Sophie has the wherewithal to defeat them. In fact, the choice is theirs – admit the dangerous direction in which their party is going and for once, do the right thing for the country. Either that or suffer the ignominy that history will surely pronounce.

Source: https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/2021/01/31/police-their-own-then-we-can-talk-unity/

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"Tonight, Trump’s office announced that David Schoen and Bruce L. Castor, Jr., will lead his defense. Schoen represented Trump advisor Roger Stone when he challenged his convictions; Castor was the district attorney who promised actor Bill Cosby he would not be prosecuted for indecent assault. The impeachment trial is scheduled to start on February 9."

Demonstrating once again that turds of a feather do indeed float together.

"There are signs that some Republicans have finally had enough of their party’s march toward authoritarianism, especially as pro-Trump Republicans grab headlines for their outrageous behavior, including shutting down a mass vaccination effort at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles for about an hour yesterday. "

The organizers of which told people coming not to wear their "Trump/MAGA gear" since "we want to reach the sheeple." Even these fuckwits are dimly aware that he's toxic to them.

"When asked why Democrats should compromise rather than go ahead without them, as Republicans repeatedly did when they held the majority, Senator Bill Cassidy (R-LA) and Senator Rob Portman (R-OH) told “Fox News Sunday” and CNN’s “State of the Union,” respectively, that Biden should honor his call for unity and that refusing to do so would kill future hopes for bipartisanship."

Sorry Asswipes, we saw this movie before, back in 2009. Even Democrats can learn from experience, so take your bullshit between your thumb and forefinger of your right hand, bend over, and on the count of three, stick it where it belongs.

And a final thought: a year from now these droolers are going to be shitting themselves as their friends and neighbors are getting 20 year sentences for conspiracy to commit sedition and treason. Not to mention, Dearest Fatass will be an indicted felon on his way to The Big House for the rest of his unnatural life.

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Matt Gaetz infuriates me beyond belief. He is an ignorant, bombastic fool and somehow is bizarrely proud of that fact. If he and his ilk are truly the future of the Republican Party, then this country is doomed because if/when they retake power in D.C., they will never voluntarily give it up again.

As for the execrable Marjorie Taylor Greene, I'll say only this: I'm Jewish, and while I am far from religious, it still forms a part of my identity. I am also painfully aware of the history of my people, and equally aware that what starts with words generally does not end with words. She poses a danger to me as a Jew specifically and to the country generally. The moral bankruptcy of Republican leadership in failing to explicitly condemn her is offensive beyond belief. Worse yet, she was awarded with a prominent committee position, a slap in the face of everyone who rightly views her anti-Semitism and conspiracy theories with alarm.

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“ When asked why Democrats should compromise rather than go ahead without them, as Republicans repeatedly did when they held the majority, Senator Bill Cassidy (R-LA) and Senator Rob Portman (R-OH) told “Fox News Sunday” and CNN’s “State of the Union,” respectively, that Biden should honor his call for unity and that refusing to do so would kill future hopes for bipartisanship.”

Oh please. Republicans will follow the lure of power.

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Everything is self-serving politics with the Republicans; nothing is about serving the best interests of their constituents and the country. This is what drives them: “Reich suggested that ‘[t]he real reason Republicans want to block Biden is they fear his plans will work.’ A successful government response to coronavirus, the economic crisis, inequality, the climate crisis, and poverty would devastate modern-day Republicans’ insistence that the solution to every problem is tax cuts and private enterprise. If Biden’s plans succeed, Reich wrote, Americans’ faith in government, and in our democracy, will be restored.”

As to the crazies in the Republican caucus, maybe the Democrats should just hold tough on their policy agendas, and let them spin out of control and destroy themselves and the Republican Party along with them. In direct response to Marjorie Taylor Greene’s report that, after talking to Trump this morning, he reaffirmed that he supports her completely, Mitt Romney tweeted tonight: “Lies of a feather flock together: Marjorie Taylor Greene’s nonsense and the ‘big lie’ of a stolen election.”

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Robert Reich knows what he is talking about and he is one of the best messengers out there. What he so succinctly said about billionaires accumulating even more obscene wealth during the pandemic, and how they could afford to find these much-needed packages and not even feel it, was spot-on and brilliant. This is the kind of message that needs to be hammered on, IMO. That, and the hypocrisy of the calls for “unity” and how the R’s only care about the deficit and debt when the D’s want to provide a social safety net rather than funnel more wealth to the the wealthy. And good for Jen Psaki! Keep up the messaging! Unity is about helping ALL Americans. It’s about conquering this virus and taking care “of the least of these,”rather than caving to the R’s demands.

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