451 Comments

Thank you Heather for once again stepping back and reminding us of the arc of US economic history over the last 100 years. Eisenhower understood the world as it was. He understood service, sacrifice and purpose. And he knew how to get things done.

Ronald Reagan was an actor playing the role of gentle, good humored father while dismantling the social contract. He artfully sold trickledown theory which grew into Republican economic policy. While subsequently disproved, it continues to dominate Republican thinking. Another Big Lie.

Joe Biden appears to be taking the long view. He is listening to his better angels and using a lifetime of experience to guide him. He knows where he wants to go, but, headwinds prevent him from taking a direct course. Instead he’s tacking. While it takes longer, every sailor knows it’s the only choice until the winds change. I’m deeply grateful.

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I absolutely love it when President Biden leans in to the microphone, lowers his voice, and tells is we can do this! All the while, not denying the political divide and repeatedly reminding us he is about caring for all Americans. The daily statistics cards in his pocket will become museum treasures.

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Great metaphor.

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"Tacking" is a most appropriate metaphor. Beats the hell out of capsizing. It's what we have today and we can keep pushing.

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Thank you. That’s a beautiful analogy. I think Biden is going to arrive at his goal. However, it would help to have an optimistic public behind him as he works towards his goal, even though they can always ask for more.

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I'm deeply grateful as well.

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Well said!

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Well said!

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At least Reagan was willing to make a pragmatic deal with the Democrats from time to time. Kevin O'Leary has illuminating material about that in his book "Madison's Sorrow."

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I would love to hear the ghost of Ike respond to being called a "socialist" for being the most determined rebuilder of the USA after WW2 possible. My family was devoted to Adlai Stevenson--who was an amazing and humane man and a great political leader--but at the same time, after fighting the war and living in Japan for a year after it, my father came home to the GI Bill (Truman) which gave him access to universities he could have in no way afforded before the war and thence into a career that ultimately took him into the nascent space industry, designing the satellites that the world relies on for telecommunications to this day. My father, from a dirt-poor Greek immigrant family, had the kind of storied career that would have been unthinkable without the benefits of Ike's dedication to rebuilding (and building!) the USA's infrastructure. That my father then went on to champion civil rights, to fight for equity for all people, to retain his FDR-style democratic principles until he died last year was in part because he admired the determination of people like Eisenhower, whose cautionary tale about the growth of the military-industrial complex was ignored by his own party.

This is the beginning. AOC is right in that we need to invest far more in infrastructure than the 2 trillion identified in this plan, but she also knows (I hope) that the re-education of America is going to be a slow process, one that will have to drag 74 million people kicking and screaming into the 21st century. The Gormless Obstructionists will continue their campaign toward oligarchy and autocracy. What Dems need to do at this point is be like Katie Porter: whip out those white boards and be loud, clear, and specific about how they are harming the very people who vote for them in their frantic snuffle after the fundaments of the billionaires they really care about.

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Katie Porter cross country whistle stop train tour!

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Linda, I can appreciate your father’s WWII service and achievements. My father served also at that time—his service starting pre-WWII and ending post-WWII. I’ve known many vets from WWII and interviewed a number of them as I researched and wrote about that war. Fine people, all—men and women. As you ponder the ghost of Ike reacting to being called a socialist, I ponder the GIs and their families reacting to a U.S. President (Trump) calling them “suckers” and “losers”. Of course, Trump said that not only about WWII vets but of anyone serving in the military or having served or being Killed in Action. Even Fox News verified those Trump statements. When a nation allows their President to get away with such slanders about people who have served and sacrificed for the nation, then a veil of shame falls over all of us.

While I’m happy to see Biden’s proposal for improvement in the nation’s physical infrastructure, I’m equally or more concerned about the nation’s moral infrastructure. How do we get honesty and morality into politics? How do we get rid of backroom deals? How do we stop these regime-change wars that sap our national treasury and leave us with a lot of blood on our hands? How do we get control of the Military Industrial Complex and stop that tail from wagging the dog? How do we reverse the “Citizens United” ruling? How do we reestablish the Supreme Court as a just, credible, and unbiased institution? I just haven’t heard Joe talk about these especially important issues. It would be nice to have some of the world’s respect as we used to have.

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A good first step to accomplishing the reforms you ask for would be the passage of HR 1 / S 1 which addresses many of those needs.

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Yes, that looks pretty good.

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Moral Infrastructure, there is the key to sanity, respect, learning, responsibility, caring, equality and truth. Building blocks for a democratic society.

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THAT'S what I Hope Biden will Spread,Fern!

With Capital Letters!!!😊💖

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Your spirit and words reflect exactly the way I feel. I have been thinking about Moral Infrastructure. While not ready to write a comment about it, I believe that right and wrong, the arc of justice, fairness, caring and truth are the principles we long to grow and wish our country to live by.

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Amen !!! It makes me wonder, where the people who run the republican shows' moral compass is!!

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Amen.

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Heydon, I am with you on the need to completely upend the government to make it more transparent, more equitable, and more responsive to the needs of "real" people (rather than corporations which, whatever Mittens Romney says, are not in my book "people."). But I do have to point out that the moral infrastructure of the US political system has never been on anything but shaky ground. Whether it was "back-room" deals in aid of special interests or the blood on the hands of every politician that waved away the genocide of indigenous and First Nations people, the enslavement of humans, the oppression of women, these are all cracks in the moral infrastructure of the nation--and the people who perpetrated them all knew better. I don't believe for a moment in the "but that is what everyone did/felt/thought" rhetoric. They all knew better. What we need is a new moral infrastructure that is inclusive and equitable, that values and accepts difference, and that is not built on the principle of oppression of others in order to enrich ourselves. It would be truly revolutionary.

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Before Abraham Lincoln, only 2 of 15 presidents were antislavery, and they both came from the same tiny patch in Braintree MA: John and Quincy Adams.

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As a result, we have elected President Biden. I trust him.

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My dad was a WWII vet in the Pacific Theater. My husband was a Vietnam War Vet. He was livid when Fake45 made those comments. I would say most veterans are grateful to have Biden in office.

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I understand. I'm a veteran as well. And I felt as your husband did. Yes, I'm also glad that Biden is in office now. I'd like Joe to speak with the AG and check on the legality of the trump operation to include tax filings by his daughter and son-in-law--Jarvanka. They made fortunes off of donald's time in office. And they were given Top Secret security clearances to attend highly secret/classified presidential meetings, even after Jared lied on his application for security clearance, even after all of trump's advisors said don't give them clearances. Donald disregarded all and gave them the highest clearances. That's just another of his countless transgressions in and out of office. He's destroyed so many institutions as he molded the country to his brand of fascism. He got away with so much.

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President Biden will very likely do all that he can to turn all things aright in the nation. He is methodical and dependable and only in his third month of service to the nation as President, and he has the experience of many years. I trust that he will do his best on all issues that face him. We must give him time.

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I've decided to keep FDR and Eleanor R on my "white privilege overreach" list for their involvement in creating, enforcing, encouraging de jure segregation in this country. See "The Color of Law", by Richard Rothstein. Most of the New Deal, while it did amazing things for this country, was aimed at and, for the most part, limited to benefiting white people.

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From what I've read and seen (photos), FDR and Eleanor appeared to be trusted by the Black population. I believe Eleanor brought the first female Black singer to the White House to perform. (Mahalia Jackson, maybe?). I saw photos of local crowds watching the train car with FDR's body in it passing slowly as it made its way from Washington to upstate New York. There were several Black ladies in the crowd in one town with many tears and anguish on their faces. I believe FDR was beloved by most of the nation. I don't know about racial division in the New Deal, but I believe the programs like WPA and CCC saved the country from collapse and revolution. The workers were paid $1 a day, and each month they had to send $25 of the $30 they earned back to their families who in turn bought food with the money and kept the local economies going. The Federal Writers Project put writers to work in very productive areas. For one thing, they were assigned to write guides to every state. I've read two of those (Indiana and Florida), and the level of detail is remarkable; better than any travel guides I've ever read. Anyway, I digress, but FDR was undoubtedly the most important President of the 20th Century.

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Heydon Buchanan: To get a better feel for Eleanor Roosevelt, I strongly recommend Blanch Wiesen Cook's 3 part biography of her. It's pretty encompassing and also includes the difficulties in her relationship w/FDR. She was very progressive for the times.

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I imagine Ms. Cook's 3-part bio of Eleanor is quite exceptional. (I checked, and my library doesn't have it.) From what I've read in the past, the emotional break between FDR and Eleanor was when she found FDR's affections going to Lucy Mercer. So, her affections went to a friend of hers. But they remained an effective working team. I believe Eleanor was trusted by the American people as she was unpretentious. If I remember correctly, she also brought Harry Hopkins (a former social worker) to FDR's attention. Then, FDR and Harry made history with the social programs which probably saved the country.

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She also brought it to FDR's attention when a developer building housing for factory workers intended to allow Black workers to purchase homes there, and they made sure that white workers were protected from having to live next door to Black families by stopping the development.

Under Roosevelt, the FHA made it possible for millions of white families to get bank loans to buy homes; however, FHA practices intentionally kept Black Americans from getting bank loans for home purchases - which has led to redlining and generations of Black families not being able to build wealth.

Whenever we discuss so-called "progressive" reforms and programs, we must ask whom they benefit. If only white men benefit, as many programs under FDR were designed to do, then they are not truly progressive.

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"I don't know about racial division in the New Deal, but I believe the programs like WPA and CCC saved the country from collapse and revolution."

If you read my original post, you will see that I admit that the New Deal did a lot for the country; however, the majority of the programs benefited white men and left women and people of color out. It is important not to paint anyone with glowing colors of absolute idolatry. If we blind ourselves to those who were left out of government programs that lifted white men into the strongest middle class our country has known, we continue the privileging of the white man over all of the rest of us.

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Maybe you could recommend a specific book which details the color discrimination in the New Deal. And, it wasn't the government programs of the 1930s "that lifted white men into the strongest middle class our country has known." It was World War II (1941-45) which accomplished that. The Allies won. U.S. veterans of all colors had access to the G.I. Bill with its generous education benefits and housing loans. BTW, it was the best G.I. Bill ever. (For Vietnam Vets, our G.I. Bill had many fewer benefits.) The U.S. 92nd Infantry Division was all Black (approx. 14,000 soldiers), and I imagine most them used the G.I. Bill. Another post-WWII benefit for the U.S. was that we were on top of the world. Our nation hadn't been bombed and manufacturing remained unscathed while most industrialized nations were blown to bits--their homes and manufacturing facilities. We had a virtual monopoly on the world commercial markets. Those things built the "progressive" middle class which began to lose ground by the mid-1970s and has continued so. In today's world, I believe that all minorities have to unite to become effective. Otherwise, they'll just end up fighting each other--a chaotic situation desired by the 1% to take attention off themselves and their increasingly vast wealth.

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My comment about the government programs that have benefited white men over everyone else was somewhat vague, I see from your response. Although I include the New Deal efforts to get the economy out of the Great Depression, I was also referring to such programs as the G.I. Bill - all of which have been viewed by our generation of white Americans as having been open for all. But the truth is that white men were given preference to the better jobs in the New Deal over white women and people of color - who, if they were lucky enough to get a job in the CCC or the WPA, were paid less and given the lowest jobs available. As for the GI Bill and other veterans benefits? Sure, Black veterans were theoretically entitled to these programs, but widespread whites only housing covenants and reluctance of banks (with full knowledge of the FHA) to cover loans for the neighborhoods into which Black families were allowed to buy, refusal of colleges and universities to admit Black students, hospitals not taking the complaints of Black veterans seriously all made those programs very seldom successfully utilized by Black Americans. The rise of the middle class in post-WWII America was by and large a whites-only rise. While our parents had the ability to build a generational foundation of wealth through home ownership, Black Americans were denied low-interest loans when they could get any loans at all, were forced into sub-standard housing, and their children received "separate, but equal" education in schools that were certainly separate, but by no means equal. There is deep, systemic, anti-Black machinery embedded in our local, state, and federal governments that we must continue to face and find ways to change.

Two very good books that I have read recently (not a definitive list):

Richard Rothstein's "The Color of Law"

Ijeoma Oluo's "Mediocre"

Some quick read articles on Black veterans' experience with the VA and the GI Bill:

https://www.history.com/news/gi-bill-black-wwii-veterans-benefits

https://warontherocks.com/2020/09/many-black-world-war-ii-veterans-were-denied-their-gi-bill-benefits-time-to-fix-that/

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An amazing story, your father's and the tradition carried on through his daughter, I suspect from your comments to date.

I am glad Mr Biden and Ms Harris are leading our nation at this time ... note, this later at this time. I also really admire AOC, though for applying the continuing tension of the next, the tomorrow, against what is proposed as pragmatic, possible, go over with the 78 million plus who long for a progressive agenda and the consequential policies needed for a 22nd Century. That pressure may be the means to thwart the opposition's efforts to reduce the inevitable scope and impact of this infrastructure bill. I think it will get passed through reconciliation and could well be in place and reason for voters to keep the House and Senate secure. It is progressive, it will START to Rebuild America Better. It will not be the only infrastructure or rebuild America bill. More companion bills should follow through the next seven congresses to achieve more of what we desire. More companion legislation will likely be leveraged due to it's enactment by states and metropolitan communities to achieve pieces of what the AOC's are pushing. I too recall the kinds of spin-offs that came with Eisenhower's little road building effort and the sweep of federal initiatives that brought so many of us from humble means into the middle class through education, civil rights expansion, through federal-state partnerships, through EEOC, labor protections, regulations, etc. I just hope the Administration sells it well and presses for recognition of its benefits and advancements. Doing the right thing doesn't always require bipartisanship.

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My parents proudly voted twice for The Candidate with a Hole in His Shoe.

https://fineartamerica.com/featured/adlai-stevenson-hole-in-shoe-underwood-archives.html

Apparently there's a t-shirt featuring the image, stating "better a hole in the shoe than a hole in the head."

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Linda, You shined more light on our stars, from Eisenhower, your father, FDR and AOC to Katie Porter (whenever I see her my system perks up). Wonderful summary from the goons to the people's champions.

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Instead what Dems do is kick Katie Porter off her most effective committee assignment.

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Well, they didn't exactly kick her off: https://thehill.com/policy/finance/534335-porter-loses-seat-on-house-panel-overseeing-financial-sector They did not go along with her request for a waiver because she is serving on two other committees as well. But it is a loss to the Financial Services Committee.

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OK - apparently this committee was her 3rd choice - honestly, the Oversight & Natural Resource committees will be just as well off with her as the Finance one was - I'm sure she will "make hay while the sun shines"!! Thanks Linda

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Yes I think she will. But it makes me so angry that she was effectively muzzled in this way. They do not want her talking like that to their donors.

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Yes a waiver that she received in the past and others received this year while she did not. Let that sink in when you think of how the Democrat leadership views someone like Katie Porter.

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I agree but still feel she will do great things on these other 2 committees. At this point in time, she is a star & I feel will continue to look out for US!

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Consider the big picture: Dems are mostly united and working together for the country and the planet. That's much better than splintering into factions that resemble Enver Hoxha-ites.

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That was a real disappointment.

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Did not know this! When did this happen?

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Apparently I am a late riser at 5 a.m. I've used the past 45 minutes to read Heather's column and most of the comments already made. I think Biden's infrastructure plan, from what we know about it, is pretty good. It's priced at a level that most Americans, except elected Republicans, will accept. AOC wants more ($10 trillion) but that's ridiculous and would be viewed by most as extreme, a word often associated with her. Biden's moderate approach to infrastructure and other programs is smart and reflects the experience he's gained in five decades in government, something AOC does not have. I admire her for her passion, but I hope as she gains more experience, she will temper herself a bit and make her goals more realistic. McConnell - geez, what more can you say about him? - is going to try to undermine anything Biden and the Democrats propose. His interest is preserving himself and the fat cats who supply elected Republicans with money, as we are learning more of in his home state of Kentucky. Trump's comments? Way off base as usual. But who cares? His base? So what. As time goes along, I believe Trump will be more and more exposed for what he really is: a low-life, manipulative, womanizing crook. We already know that he puts the "boy who cried wolf" to shame, so the lying is just a part of his schtick at which you eventualy laugh. If you believe him, then do what should accompany that belief: get a sharpie and write "MORON" in large letters across your forehead. I truly hope Biden's plan passes. If Senate Republicans galvanize against it, they're only hurting the constituents they apparently don't care about anyway. They were against the relief package, they're against gun control, they're against anything that makes sense and gives their constituents better lives. But again, what do they care; they're in it for themselves. Well, I've had my bowl of Grape Nuts, granola, raisins and soy milk (what a leftist, socialist breakfast, eh?) so it's time to either go back to sleep (fat chance) or do something constructive. I have a backlog of trout flies to tie. I'll opt for that; it's relaxing and not at all controversial. By the way, I hope Derek Chauvin fries. Not something I'm apt to say, but what an evil monster he is.

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The thing that Republicans despise more than spending money on anything that helps socially is having a Democratic president who spends money to improve life for everyone and gets credit for it, thus making future elections of minority Republicans less likely.

For people who are predicting Derek Chauvin's acquittal, if the jurors can watch the total devastation of so many witnesses at the murder George Floyd, and choose to acquit him, there is no hope for this country.

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He is not being tried for capital murder; he will not be "fried." I do hope he will go to prison for a long, long time, though. Just for the record, though: capital punishment is immoral and I would hope we would not advocate for it here.

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I was using fried in a general sense to mean punished harshly, not electrocuted or put to death in another manner. I am not in favor of capital punishment, never was. I just wanted to clear the air on that. Thank you for pointing it out. I will be more sensitive with my use of words.

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Put that way, I couldn't agree more!

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Is it OK if I interpret the term "fried" then not as in the electric chair, but as "I hope he burns in hell," which if there is a hell, he truly deserves.

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"I have never killed a man, but I have read some obituaries with great pleasure." --Clarence Darrow

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I had that very feeling about a much-wished-for obit throughout November 4, 2016 to January 20, 2021. Still an obit I look forward to reading - and at my age of only 66, I'm quite possibly going to live long enough to see it.

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Of course, I have no idea who you could be taking about, but if the person you reference happens to be obese, eats junk food, and gets very little exercise, I suspect you may be right.

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That's how I understood it, Bruce!

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fly tying is great therapy, and thanks for the cogent summary

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Using them is even better. That's coming up soon. Snow flurries here today.

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We got about 4-5 inches last night - Robins are very bewildered!

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That is certainly more than an onion snow, the traditional last snowfall of the season according to Pennsylvania Dutch lore.

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Why is the last snowfall called onion snow?

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Here's what I found: The idea of an onion snow originated with the Pennsylvania Dutch. It refers to a snow that falls after the onions have been planted in spring and are beginning to sprout. It's generally a light snow that melts quickly. Many Pennsylvania gardeners have planted their onions or are planning to do so in the near future.

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Oh if that were only so... Last year we had 5-6 inches middle of April and also - snow in May (dusting). So likely not the last. The sun is out & its melting - a little. Supposed to be 18 tonight.

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Had fresh steelhead for dinner last night. Now the smelt are running...

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I am VERY envious. You're in Michigan?

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Up North!

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God's country, eh? Good for you. Wish we had steelhead here, but the shad are running in the Delaware and I'm trying to get my little boat ready. They are a good fish and still pretty plentiful.

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Today (April 1st) I believe is the first day of trout? season here. Maybe thru the ice?

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AOC is an idealist, while Biden is a realistic pragmatist. While we need some of the former, we need more of the latter.

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We need the AOC's to aim way out there in order to get people to contemplate taking a baby step. In my observation that is how most change happens. Do I expect or agree with AOC? Not always, but she has an interesting perspective.

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I really like AOC. She doesn’t come from a wealthy family and she scratched and crawled her way up the ladder to get where she is. She is passionate about the working class. She is young but super smart and well prepared. If you have ever heard her question people, AOC is really something to watch and learn from.

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It's the whole "time zone" thing, plus the way Dr. Richardson posts, the night owls are more likely to pounce first than us early risers, especially the west coast ones. I admit to one or more (many more, to be truthful) "early riser" mornings between the political conventions and the inauguration when I could not sleep for mind churnings. Fly tying sounds like an excellent way to achieve some measure of zen.

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I hear your frustration Dennis. Hang in there!

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My understanding is the jury can convict him on Murder 1, despite the trial for Murder 2.

The testimony is horrific and very damaging for him. Especially his response AFTER Floyd was removed. The man has no heart at all.

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"Biden is making a historic gamble that Americans are tired of the past forty years of austerity and are instead eager for the government to invest in America again."

It's difficult to think of any nation that has blown trillions on undeclared wars for decades as a nation of "austerity." We've simply hijacked the fruits of productivity away from the producers and either blew them in lethal firework shows all over the planet or moved them into oligarchs' pockets-- who in turn moved much into hidden offshore accounts and away from the economy or the people. Biden is starting to lead as though he represents a government investing in the future of a nation as opposed to the recent experience of a president that represented a street gang shaking down a neighborhood the size of the U.S. No nation ever went bankrupt investing in its infrastructure or the well-being of its citizens.

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Also worth noting that an estimated 40% of the Trump/McConnell tax cut went to foreign investors via stock market gains.

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This statistic should be on billboards

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Some of the GQP’s biggest donors.

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Don't forget in hiding the money in offshore accounts and/or moving them to oligarch's pockets, that money comes back as "dark money" in politics, thanks to Citizens United.

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Ed, You eloquently described the mess. Thank you.

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I see it as well informed solutions, not a gamble.

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I often wonder how they would rebuild this country, short of privatizing everything. Unless that’s their entire plan.

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It is their plan. Look at what they're doing with USPS.

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Of course it is. Pretending to not know what infrastructure is, pretending we are number one in healthcare, pretending that we can’t afford national parks, and that huge corporations can’t afford higher taxes is all part of convincing the base that we need to sell everything off. And of course the private sector can police itself too.

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Who they?

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Grace's "...they would rebuild this country, short of privatizing everything."

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Swords into plowshares comes to mind. What other country that invests in military not its people, comes to mind.

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North Korea.

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Perhaps that explains the bromance between #45 and Kim?

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Lanita, Kim considers T**** a moron, according to Korea watchers. I'm afraid it was unrequited love.

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FERN MCBRIDE (NYC)just now

In this Letter, Heather is rocking with Biden. It is a beautiful night or shall I say morning? Biden's Infrastructure/Jobs/climate Plan is a colossal leap from broken to rebuild. He is a new man, too. I won't go into what many of us thought were his failures and weaknesses because he has become a revelation and the miracle we so need.

I cannot absorb and examine this feast before us yet because the murder/manslaughter case against Derek Chauvin for the death of George Floyd is at the center of me. This case is the trial of the country. Has there been a more important trial in your lifetime? The agony of Black people in this country for centuries was on the street where George Floyd had his last breath and in the courtroom where the witnesses, the store clerk, his family and the rest of us mourn.

At the moment, I am too swollen with emotion and weary to write on, but there will be more to comment upon as the trial proceeds.

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In the midst of the welcome light of the Biden Administration's governance, the Chauvin trial looms heavy. Anything we see or read makes our emotions raw again. We feel the anguish of the witnesses reliving their terrible experience as they testify. Everyone who saw the video of George Floyd being killed under the knee of Chauvin then became a secondary witness--with secondary trauma, unless they went into denial. It is hard to concentrate. May we be extra kind to each other. May justice prevail.

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Cathy Learoyd (Texas)9 min ago

The witnesses have been extraordinary -- the off duty EMS woman who the police wouldn't listen to, the nine year old who told it like she saw it that the medical personnel when they arrived had to pull Chauvin off George Floyd, the young woman who had the fortitude to video the entire agony of what was happening, the 911 worker who called the police supervisor because what she saw wasn't right. We're seeing the trauma of not just this murder but all the unjustified deaths of black men and women from above the law policemen. This is a movement. It's time for all of us to become followers of this movement. This time let's get social justice right. No denial. We the People, All of Us This Time!

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You said this so well, and reflect what so many of us saw during that. On the other hand, yesterday at noon I got to sit in the transport office (the place at the Sheriff's Office where courthouse security and inmate transport is located) and listen to a handful of young deputies, most of them military veterans, express a completely different outlook and opinion. What they saw was a defense attorney doing a "great job" and one who made the young EMT "look like a fool". One of them said "I don't see murder coming out of this; maybe just a manslaughter" with no evidence of thought as to what he was saying about this incident.

This is what we are up against. That is what people on the "right" see.

I know that we all see the world through our own lenses, but this is pretty disturbing to me.

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We all need to pray that these people don't prevail. I hope this is a watershed moment. The country, and civilization, need it to happen.

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This is the crux of all of our problems in America today. The polarity of our perspectives divides us in so many realms. 😔 I would want to know if those young deputies know any black people. Did they train or serve with any Black Americans and can they imagine any of those friends in George Floyd’s place, face down on the pavement, arms wrenched behind him or her, hands cuffed, with three men kneeling on his or her leg, back and neck? Begging for breath, begging for mercy.

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I have some training scenario ideas. You bring up some good questions.

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The thought stuck in my head is someone's idea that any of us could (have the luxury to) volunteer to lay down and let someone else rest his or her knee on our neck for 9 minutes.

We so take breathing for granted.

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I've been watching this afternoon and I wonder if their perception is equally disdainful regarding the firefighters and paramedics?

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I heard last night that at least two jurors asked for a time out. I can't imagine sitting in that courtroom and hearing all of the dramatic testimony - from Black and White witnesses, and voting for anything but conviction.

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Thank you, Cathy, that was so well-said and I completely agree about the bravery and humanity of these witnesses.

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'Everyone who saw the video of George Floyd being killed under the knee of Chauvin then became a secondary witness--with secondary trauma ...' Yes, Ellie that is exactly it. We are carrying the murder and George Floyd's suffering inside us.

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Ellie Kona, I see that the defense is trying to portray George Floyd‘s actions in the convenient store as those of a black druggie passing counterfeit money. That will fit the stereotype that many people have in their heads of “every black man.” (Cf., Reagan’s welfare queen who drives a Cadillac.) That attempt to justify how Mr. Floyd was treated is, I guess, to be expected in an attempt to influence the jury, but I find it abominable; I keep coming back to the 9+ minutes of one man’s knee on the neck of an unarmed, handcuffed man’s neck - a man lying on the hard pavement begging for his life. And the cop with his hands in his pocket and what I would call a look of satisfaction on his face as onlookers pleaded with him to let up

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The young man cashier testified today (March 31) that George Floyd's slow response to a question led the young man to believe that Mr. Floyd was "high," and that the bluish color of the $20 bill caused him to believe it was fake. This young man testified for the prosecution.

The defense does what it does, and the prosecution does what it does. The witnesses are clearly in anguish as they testify, and they are not portraying a situation that called for containment by extremely violent means. The prosecution is putting on a compelling case.

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And the anguish never appeared to have anything to do with fear of George Floyd.

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And the young convenience store clerk said that George Floyd had been congenial and calm - never hostile. The clerk was told to get Floyd to return to the store after he voiced his suspicions to the manager. The fact that the clerk went out twice to call Floyd back, and was not frightened, although Floyd didn't want to return, served to disabuse the jury of the narration being put forth by the defense that Floyd was a big, scary Black hoodlum. Then the clerk said he was sad and guilty, and wished he'd never told the manager, but just given the bill back to Floyd and avoided the tragedy. He was a prosecution witness, as you said, and probably was very effective.

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The prosecution showed that tape to indicate that George was friendly, made conversation and wasn't dragging himself around. He was high but coherent and not threatening to anyone. The store clerk went out twice to speak with George. The clerk was not afraid of George and had no reason to be. That was good defense.

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Fern, I totally agree with your assessment, but there will be those who are predisposed to see Mr. Floyd in the worst possible light. Strike 1, he is black, strike 2, he is unsteady on his feet (insert “and probably on drugs since he is a black man”), 3, he obviously knew the money was fake since he, a black man, was undoubtedly a criminal of some sort and 4, he was a tall black man, which means he was, by definition, dangerous. (These folks do not know the name, reputation, and gentle character of Rosie Greer, for one.)

I have lived in Spotsylvania County, Virginia for over 30 years and have learned enough about the “War Against Northern Aggression” to know that the South Will Rise Again! (I am an upstate New Yorker and New Englander by birth, belef system,and temperment.)

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Agree with you.

My middle aged white mother tried to buy something with a fake $20 bill a few years ago, unknown to her that it was fake when she handed it to the clerk. The clerk told her it was fake, handed it back to her, and asked if she had a different form of payment. My mom did, paid with a card, and we went about our day.

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Mel, it was painful to read your story. That is the story - your mother and George Floyd.

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"...but there will be those who are predisposed to see Mr. Floyd in the worst possible light." True this, Sara. But in this moment there are only 12 people who have the fate of justice and the Black Lives Matter movement in their hands.

(I remember Rosey Grier...a gentle giant: After Grier's professional sports career, he worked as a bodyguard for Senator Robert Kennedy during the 1968 presidential campaign. Grier was guarding Ethel Kennedy when Senator Kennedy was shot. Although unable to prevent the assassination, Grier took control of the gun and subdued the shooter, Sirhan Sirhan.")

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I didn’t know that about Rosey Grier. I became a huge fan of his when I was 7 and saw the television production of Free to be You and Me, Marlo Thomas’ groundbreaking album of poems, songs and stories. Rosey Grier sang “It’s all right to cry,” still a family favorite! I just read that her album was just this year “deemed ‘culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant’ by the Library of Congress and selected for preservation in the National Recording Registry.” If you’ve never heard it, you should download it today! Big Rosey told us it was ok to cry, that it gets the sad and the mad all out of ya.

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You are correct. That will be the defense as well as creating doubt about whether the knee to the neck for 929 caused George Floyd's death. This is the most important trial for this country. It is so crucial. That is why many of us are very attuned to it and quite intense.

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Sorry, Fern, I jumped in before reading this. Maybe the jurors will agree with us.

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Yes. The murder of George Floyd is surfacing dark, collective pain on top of the pain inflicted on our collective psyche by the enormous number of Covid deaths, the ongoing pandemic and the hateful Republican lies and obstructionism. We can’t help but feel the impacts of these onslaughts. So much is uncertain and anxiety-producing, with so much existential significance hanging in the balance.

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Pamsy, The people are being vaccinated; we have a good, sane and caring president; it is spring. The country is getting better and people are protected by very good vaccines. I don't know where you live -- here in NYC flowers are in bloom and the little leaf buds show a glimmer of what's in store!

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Yes, many of us have much to be grateful for. Meanwhile many are grieving lost loved ones, lost jobs, lost businesses, lost homes. And our brothers & sisters of color fear leaving their homes. So we hold hope in one hand and pain in the other. And we carry on.

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I will carry on with Love. 💕

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I’m in Florida and I’m heading into fire season and then hurricane season so your spring is much more hopeful! I am grateful for the vaccines but-please don’t jump on me-there’s a lot we don’t know about them and the variants are a big issue.

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thank you for this

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"Has there been a more important trial in your lifetime?"

(1) Felony45's 2nd impeachment trial in February, and (2) Chauvin.

Most important in my lifetime. 2021, unforgettable year.

I am always saying that white favoritism (privilege, supremacy) and male favoritism-supremacy and straight (boy-girl) supremacy are at the heart of everything Republican, including even the GOP's culture war issues with Potato Head going genderless and Dr. Seuss going in the direction of racism-free. But perhaps I am the only person who has noted the symbolism of this murderer's name: Chauvin. It's not just racist white law enforcement on trial. It's also, by implication, abuse of male power towards women on trial. Chauvinism was the name for sexism before the word sexism was coined.

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Absolutely, it is almost like a bizarre novel depicting all these cretins with such extreme characterizations and named so aptly by some mysterious Shakespearean writer of these modern times. (Chauvin, Con-way, De-joy, Miller and Bannon, Graham, Gaetz, Troy, etc. etc.). Who is writing this play? I never want to read or see it again. Looking quite forward to the hopeful epilogue of this era and just rewards.

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And right you are Roland. This is going to be quite a year. I really think the next 90 days are pivotal. Chauvin trial (yes I got the symbolism); American Jobs Plan; The For the People Act; Vax plan complete. All this in aggregate will show our true character. I am cautiously optimistic. I'll leave the rant for later, I need more coffee.

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Laughing.

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I too have thought about Chauvin’s name a lot. Glad you brought it up.

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I never thought of Chauvin - chauvinism. Excellent ❤️🤍💙

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The Chauvin-ist here has always been plain as day.

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It struck me, too, as soon as his name was released.

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Exactly, Roland.

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Yes, Fern and Ellie, and everyone here, I am grateful for you bringing this up and how heavy this trial is impacting many of us. I have felt so heavy and depressed this week-- and thought it was my vaccine or just one too many things to deal with. Reading your writings was like a lightbulb about the pall of this trial over America. I am not prone to depression, but this trial underscores what is wrong with America and our foundations. The ap-pall-ing discrepancies of white privileged knees choking America. This moment, no matter how painful it is, is our moment to keep our eyes open, throughout our tears to honor our people of color and how they are treated here. I keep telling George and all the others of color or oppression who have been murdered or suffer like this that, today, America may just prove that they have not all died in vain. This is our chance to change the trajectory of this country and to say, we will not treat one another this way anymore. Harsh consequences must ensue. Look what the naked celebrity wannabe emperor and his cronies got away with for the past four and forty years. T***p was so right-- "...When you are a celebrity [and are white with money] —you can do anything." Well, let's prove him wrong from now on.

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Penelope, We hold each other and hold each other up. The country is on trial with Chauvin. 20 million people in hundreds upon hundreds of demonstrations in 2020. It is far from over. Mobilization continues. Many more Whites, young ones and Asians are joined with our brothers and sisters. Don't be depressed, we're stronger than ever together.

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Well, I am actually thinking that this is the best kind of depression because I am feeling, very appropriately for this moment. A strange sort of pride is enveloping me right now---that I am palpably experiencing this moment in time of being a person capable of deep feelings, empathy, compassion, sympathy. So rather than feel sad, I am proud that I can join this remarkable group of people participating in this moment in our history. We are a movement-- and unless you are able to feel all these things, you really cannot be a member. So, I think I will hold this more like a precious, little multiracial baby, that will be writing, calling, marching, (after the second vaccine), boycotting and getting in some good trouble.

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Penelope, You lifted me up and up. Your description speaks for me, too, because you raised me to it. Thank you

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I really appreciate your comments and support, Fern. Feeling so connected to people here and my little "baby's" eyes are leaking a lot today, and those tears feel so ancient, like I am also allowing my Cherokee ancestors' lives and deaths to be present and honored in all of this grief for our country and people. It is such a hard Good. I am so glad I to not be alone.

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John Lewis, Yes.

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Trump's "You can do it!" (from the notorious "locker room incident ) describes his whole irresponsible, scoundrelly philosophy of life.

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Completely upheld but the bizarre GOP.

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I'm beginning to feel a ray of hope. Let's dare to think optimistically.

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Just know that millions of souls have been sharing your grief as this trial unfolds. May George Floyd Rest In Peace.

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Yes, the trial feels very raw and weighs heavily on so many friends right now.

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The Democrats need to show in chart form such things as with the corporate tax was before 2017 so that Republicans can’t hop on the idea that Biden is “increasing “tax rates to the extreme. They should also use charts to show when and how income has been re-distributed at least since the time of Ronald Reagan, the hero of so many Republicans. People need to *see* this to really get it. They should also point out, as Pete Buttigieg did to Judy Woodruff’s audience last evening, that the infrastructure improvements in the new bill and their costs would be spread out over a period of years. Too often, the public is presented with figures in the billions and trillions of dollars and assume that it will be authorized and appropriated in one year. A pill is much easier to swallow when it’s broken into smaller pieces.

When Buttigieg was asked about the criticisms of the progressives that Biden’s plan doesn’t go far enough, he said basically that we can’t do everything at once and that some things must be planned for later implementation.

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The Administration needs to Katie Porter all of this!

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I would love to see the data in chart form on taxes. I would also like to see the details of how we are ranked 13th in the world for infrastructure. As far as public transportation goes I have been in many countries that have far superior public transportation.

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Agree. 13th seems generous. Maybe 23rd? I’ve been in Boston for three decades - because of the The Big Dig (massive infrastructure to move a highway underneath the city. . . Plus a whole lot more) Infrastructure has been on my mind. We haven’t moved the needle. Airports, bridges, tunnels, roads, highways, trains, city streets, sidewalks, (don’t get started on the crumbling T - the oldest subway network in the States). . . Neglected for FAR TOO LONG. It’s bad for residents and bad for tourists - why would I visit here when I could go to so many other countries with superior infrastructure?

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Yes but you have also to think of the geographic scale of the country and the excellence of their air transport and maritime facilities to counteract somewhat the bad positioning on public transit. The NYC subway system hasn't been renovated and reequiped in probably 75 years......and Amtrak?????. Canada was little better in some respects as when they set up the Via Rail passenger train service....combining the old CP/CN systems....they kept all the equipment which was far from new even then in 1980/1. I ran a project to evaluate their capitalization value for the new companies books inspecting their whole rolling stock with a group of engineers....and they are still running the same cars and engines now, I think, across the country.

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Reminds me of the excellent display in committee by the (I think) Dem Senator for RI when facing down trumpian stupidities.

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Yes, Sheldon Whitehouse--that was magnificent. Katie Porter-esque!

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Secretary Pete also did a fabulous job this morning, fielding questions and showing a clear grasp of past and present situations.

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Yes, I heard Pete ButtIglehart, too! It feels so reassuring and hopeful to have intelligent, thoughtful leaders running things again. He was brilliant.

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This is exciting and hopeful news! I just listened to Robert Reich’s 6 minute lesson on the Public Investment Deficit, and Biden’s plan seems to answer Reich’s call to invest in America. Wonderful.

https://youtu.be/wYU1aP2FmOM

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Reich is pretty remarkable. If you have seen any other videos he has put out, he is also quite the artist. What he captures are visuals people can relate to. He’s just so smart!

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Thanks Jeanne, Robert Reich is almost always a great intellectual pick me up.

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Thank You!

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My father was a Ship's Master, unlimited tonnage on the open sea, and I have been familiar with the plight of American shipping for most of my adult life. In a nutshell, until the Viet Nam war the US Merchant Marine was a thriving enterprise with shipping contracts to every port and a large well maintained fleet. During that war, my understanding is the US Government commandeered the ships to run supplies to SE Asia, giving the shipping co.'s legal right to break existing contracts and take even more lucrative gov't. contracts. Which was fine for several years, but when the war ended and the shipping co.'s went back to their previous business contacts to negotiate new contracts, it turned out the actual freight hauling hadn't stopped for the American war, so those businesses found new shippers under foreign flags, which operated much cheaper! They would have gladly gone back to the US fleet, but were only willing to pay much reduced prices, which our ships couldn't meet. The issue being US flag ships run at much higher safety, labor, and environmental standards than flag of convenience fleets, and US merchant shipping saw a steep decline in its business, which it has never recovered. The Wagner Act requires any ship sailing between US ports be American flagged, and has been the last bulwark in maintaining a viable US merchant fleet for intra-coastal and Great Lakes shipping. That act often gets hammered on when issues with Puerto Rico come up, because it adds to their costs of bringing freight from the US. But it is a godsend for our domestic merchant

marine, a vitally important element of a strong nation.

I had the pleasure of stopping for my morning break looking out over the Atlantic Ocean while I read today's letter, before getting on to work. The ocean has always been a presence in my life. The line about Biden's infrastructure plan requiring US manufactured products be shipped on US flag ships in particular jumped out at me, and made me glad.

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My husband is a retired Merchant Marine. He was an AB Tanker-men. He was on 21 days and off 21. He was on a tug and barge, the tug slept eight men and the barge was 620 feet long. They most often were along the gulf coast states and up the east coast. My husband was born and raised in Virginia Beach and I was born and raised on Long Island. Water, water, everywhere. He and I both love the water.

I thought it was The Jones Act, that said American flagged vessel American Merchant Marine, but could be wrong. I know how well American Merchant Marines are trained, my husband took many trainings to upgrade and keep his tickets current. He had deep sea certification, but never went.

Thank you for posting the information these men and women work hard and deserve the recognition.

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You are right! I was going off memory, and confused the Wagner Act, which concerns Labor rights and Union representation, with the Jones act. My mistake, Thank you! (I'm a Union member and the Wagner act is occasionally referenced in our discussions, so popped into my mind first)

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Syd, thanks for that information, which I did not know. I live in a small borough in eastern PA nine miles from the Delaware River. I envy you in terms of scenery to behold. Please provide us with more about American shipping when you feel like writing.

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My wife's grandfather was Merchant Marine, and one of his brothers was a SeaBee. Two very under-appreciated services that could be put to great use in these times.

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Very informative--thank you. Another casualty to corrupt parties has been our sources of information as parties allowed the corporate owners--now just six families to replace investigative reporters with editorial writers. Heathergenerates far better investigative reporting than most anything I now see in the New Jerk Times. The followers here are also giving more informative information than the partisan trolls that seem to now dominate Times' comments that get rated as "picks when they agree wit the Times' agenda. I hope we rebuild our news information system in his nation that is now been reduced to oligarch mouthpieces and suppression of what they are using our nation's military to do to enrich corporations.

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I have the same concerns about press independence and quality of reporting. They act as the eyes and ears of the public, without a robust fourth estate we easily become victims of government rather than participants. I actually hold the New York Times in high regard and have been a long time subscriber. You just need to know what your getting. It is an establishment paper. It seems to get similar vitriol from my friends on the far left as it gets from the right. I definitely agree with you about the comments sections too. I used to enjoy them a great deal, until I noticed about 1 1/2 - 2 years ago they seemed to get colonized by A LOT of people with right wing views. It was weird. But then I found Dr. Richardson's letters, and I find these much more enjoyable.

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Thanks for this historical insight.

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So much I didn't know. Thanks!

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This history is wonderful. I am inspired. Thank you!

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Thank you, Syd. I didn't know any of this.

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It's so good to have a government again that works for the good of the nation.

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Thank you for silencing the noise and composition this with clarity. There's too much extraneous noise in many articles. We are very grateful for your hard work. This piece gives me great hope! Wouldn't it be grand if corporations pay their fair share. We pay 36% in income tax. Since July I had to spend $21,000 on Copays for Dental care. My husband had to pay $12,000 for Eye surgery. CITIZENS UNITED continues to allow corporations to act with impunity. How is it okay for my family to pay 36% while big corporations pay less and often nothing?Apologies for my digression.

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This could mean recovery for my little PR firm; think what it could mean for all of the other folks it puts back to work! And the implications of having the systemic improvements are huge, for all of us.

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When I listened to the President last night and heard the line, “It's time to build our economy from the bottom up and from the middle out” I thought Professor Richardson might have begun moonlighting as a speechwriter for the White House.

Inspiring words signaling a real change for the better.

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Conservatives always say "tax and spend" like it is a bad thing.

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Yeah, would it be better just to tax? I own a home. There are times I must “spend” whether I feel like it or not. Deferred maintenance will catch up—when it becomes terribly costly. We’re almost at that point on infrastructure.

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Good point, Marcy. Funny how those conservatives who love to compare national spending to family budgets (sitting around the kitchen table visual), don't seem to make the distinction between random spending and actually investing in the future viability of systems and structures.

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Not to mention the fact that infrastructure improvements essentially pay for themselves in economic stimulus and increased efficiency.

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And one thing leads to another, meaning that a lot of these projects will be cans of worms. Once one thing is rebuilt the others will need to be as well to integrate properly.

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Which is not necessarily a bad thing, right? Here in Seattle, for instance, they are building out capacity for a light rail system that is not yet fully funded, under the assumption that "if you build it, the dollars will come." Sneaky, but effective.

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They pay off IF they were well-chosen.

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We are past that point on a lot of our infrastructure. Either we fix it now, or the problems continue to get worse. It seems to me that the autocracy party is just fine with crumbling infrastructure, poor health care, and all the rest of it. They are the ones who want to take without giving back, to redistribute wealth into their own pockets and those of their masters.

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That's the corrupt model of a third world country. The population lives with crumbling buildings and roads, with limited water delivery and sewage systems, if any. While the upper class elites and politicians rake all the money from the economy for themselves.

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Exactly, Marcy! We lucky homeowners often need to spend on our infrastructure so we can thrive in the future.

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Right there with you!

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Rather than calling it an increase in taxes, I would call it a "reinstatement" after the corrupt mafioso corruption of the past four years, plus.

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The line has always worked. The R's spend all the money, plus lower taxes on the rich when they can. When the Dems are back in power, they have to raise taxes to repair the damage the R's did. The R's scream 'tax and spend'. rinse and repeat.

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Pretty much. You saw McConnell lining that putt up between the election and the inauguration.

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Even a Republican had to raise taxes after the previous Republican president made so many tax cuts. Remember “read my lips, no new taxes” Bush1.

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an assumption of poverty, scarcity, that there is never enough

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I may be confused. Are you saying that we shouldn't address poverty? I think I'm misinterpreting your statement. Apologies

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I think he means the assumption of scarcity in particular. The myth that tells us things like there isn't enough food in the world, when there is if we'd share it, not enough value in the economy when there would be if it was distributed.

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This plan is inspiring. Yes, the many problems besetting our infrastructure shouldn't have taken decades to address. But Biden is showing he's hell-bent on ending the Republican-led disinvestment in America that has enriched that party's big donors.

Professor, your historical context helps so much to understand the importance. The nugget about President Eisenhower's experience in a 1919 transcontinental military convoy is fascinating. He's the first president I was aware of as a child.

Let's hope Democrats find the will to push the plan through, even a much-amended one. Besides helping so many people, it will help restore long-lost pride in the country. Biden cited the construction of the interstate highway system and the space race with the Soviet Union, which I'm old enough to remember fondly. The latter was extraordinary, especially for me growing up in Central Florida, and it gave me my first understanding of national pride.

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Hear hear!

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Finally a President who is thinking in the way of Eisenhower. Think of the economy as a household income. It has to meet the needs of the family food, shelter, healthcare, clothing, education, etc. Now think of that household income where a big chunk of it goes into the pockets of head of household and isn't available for the family's needs but rather sits in that pocket inert, gathering dust, or worse, feeds the appetite of the head of household for luxuries, fancy dinners, payments on the new car, etc. while the roof is leaking, the kitchen needs a new fridge, baby needs a new pair of shoes, and the like. Well, leaving a big chunk of the available cash coming into the house but misapplied to living high off the hog is like the tax cuts that the GOP dearly loves. The country goes to hell in a handbasket while a massive chunk of its income goes to the whim and benefit of only a few members of the household while the needs of the rest go begging. Go for it Joe!

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The challenges this country faces need creative, “both/and” solutions. There are so many people out there, wanting to address those challenges. They come up against Republican politicians who offer false “either/or” choices and showing NO imagination, just more tax cut “zombie ideas” to use Paul Krugman’s terminology.

Republicans paint Democrats as tax and spend. Democrats have to tax and spend to fix the things Republicans broke during their times in power.

I read many years ago in US News & World report that voting for Republicans was tantamount to voting for a recession. Let that idea marinate for a while. The “haves” do not want this country to be a functioning entity, unless it benefits them. Exhibit A is Mitch McConnell.

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The Rs seemed to be fine with “Tax and give to the insanely rich” as a reason to increase debt.

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Yes, BUT can a 'household' print USA Dollars? Federal vs household; two very different economies.

USA FEDERAL government, spends, then taxes as needed. State, Local and households must come up with the money first (tax, earn, borrow, steal….) THEN spend.

See chapter one "Don't Think of a Household" (budget); Stephanie Kelton, "The Deficit Myth."

Click on "LOOK INSIDE," from the Contents for a generous sampling.

https://www.amazon.com/Deficit-Myth-Monetary-Peoples-Economy/dp/1541736184

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Indeed!!!!

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I agree with much of what is proposed, but think the statement that the rich paid much higher income taxes in the 1950s may be misleading - see https://taxfoundation.org/taxes-on-the-rich-1950s-not-high/. Comparing effective tax rates instead of marginal tax rates may be more accurate. Also, without the alternative minimum tax back then the rich were able to receive more tax-exempt interest by investing in municipal bonds than is possible today. The wealthy will always be able to afford better tax accountants and attorneys than the middle classroom help them to legally reduce their income taxliability. As for billionaire becoming more wealthy during the pandemic, this increase in net worth is mainly due to unrealized gain on stocks, which can disappear very quickly if the market turns. To lock in those gains securities would need to be sold, one reason I support an increase in the capital gains tax rate, at least for certain types of marketable securities.

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I always enjoyed Jack Benny's joke about the government getting 90% of his income and his agent 10%. I had the great privilege of getting to perform with Jack Benny when he came a did benefit concerts for Symphony Orchestras around the country which the Ford Foundation matched. He made my very short list of people I most admire from that experience. He was 78 (twice 39) at the time. He came out on stage like a 39 year old and helped people laugh and forget their cares for a hour and twenty. When I passed the Green Room after the concert was over it was clear he had given every bit of his energy to that performance. He had the choice of being a concert violinist (yes, he was a very fine violinist) or a comedian. He saw his role as a comedian as a mission to make people lives better. Great man!

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I adored him...never knew him, of course, but he was actual friends with Eddie Anderson who played “Rochester” on his show. Benny was the first to have a black man on a show who had equal status as him. Their banters were hilarious but knowing that they were true buddies is endearing. Here is a wonderful article about the two of them: https://hometownstohollywood.com/editorials/rochester-and-jack-breaking-racial-barriers/

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As a quite small girl, I had lunch with him once. He was in DC for a show, and was playing golf with my grandfather, who was on the tour and also a club pro. I sat on his lap the entire luncheon, and he payed lovely attention to a tiny star struck child. It was memorable for sure. What a charming experience that was, with a charming man.

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Ugh! Oh for an edit. *paid

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And great Cathy and Kathy and memories!

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Ditto. Thanks for these. It’s so nice to learn of the goodness in people we only knew as performers... or presidents, or, fill in the blank. I need to read about these to continue to have hope in the human race.

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What a lovely memory!

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It’s so funny that in the middle of the horrible trial and all the problems in our world that the mere mention of Jack Benny made me happy. I truly haven’t thought of the man for maybe 60 years but I used to watch him on tv with my family.

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That's a beautiful memory, Kathy. Lucky you!

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My maternal grandfather resembled Jack Benny and was often taken for him. Ever the jokester, he never denied it.

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He was handsome.

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Cathy thank you for the memory of Jack Benny. I never met him but I have a respect for his droll humor and intelligence.

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