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Lefsetz Letter » Blog Archive » Taking A Stand Is Good Business
In case you missed the memo, voter registrations went way up after Taylor Swift took a side.
You should too, it humanizes you.
Call it the millennial ethos. To succeed in the world today you must have an identity, and be proud of it. Sure, there will be backlash from those who don’t agree, but if you think everybody loves you, you’re absolutely wrong. That’s what the internet has taught us, there is no monoculture, chances are people have never heard of you or don’t know your music. Then again, it’s those who are uninvolved who take umbrage and protest the most. Like the Republicans who attacked Taylor Swift. Were they really her fans, did they really listen to her music? OF COURSE NOT! So what does it matter? Music is not about the court of opinion, people vote with clicks on streaming services, by buying concert tickets, never forget your fans keep you alive, not the media, so play to them, and what fans want most is a 3-D personality that they can relate to. They’re looking to identify, they’re looking for instruction, I learned more about love and life listening to Joni Mitchel and Jackson Browne than I did from my friends, I thought they got me, I thought they understood me, fans feel the same way about Taylor Swift. And the truth is Taylor Swift is an oddball who doesn’t fit in, didn’t she tell us that from the very beginning, on her first two albums? She couldn’t believe she got all the adulation, then she tried to create a girl posse to counteract the backlash, she grew up in public but she never grew up. Taylor Swift is not a rapper, not part of a community, she’s sui generis, a party of one, as are all true artists, by taking a stand she only burnishes her image, when an artist lets their freak flag fly, shows their true beliefs, it bonds fans to them. It’s the wishy-washy pop stars who fade away.
music  pop_music  politics  Dems  lefsetz 
5 days ago by rgl7194
Fox & Friends Pissed at Taylor Swift’s Political Remarks | Music News | Consequence of Sound
Charlie Kirk says he's a bigger fan of Kanye West, anyway
Called it. When Taylor Swift broke with her standard silence yesterday and publicly endorsed Tennessee’s Democratic Senate candidate Phil Bredesen and Democratic Congressman Jim Cooper, we knew Fox & Friends would have something to say about it. This morning, they didn’t let us down.
Turning Point USA founder Charlie Kirk was a guest on the program to talk about Swift’s remarks. He took a number of shots at the pop star, even going so far as to suggest she couldn’t have possibly written the statement herself. “It’s rather evident and clear that — I don’t want to accuse her of this, but I don’t think she was the only one that wrote that post on Instagram,” he said, while accusing her of just that. “She probably got some very bad information.”
music  pop_music  politics  Dems  tv  fake_news 
5 days ago by rgl7194
Lefsetz Letter » Blog Archive » Taylor Takes A Side
You play offense, not defense.
Ever since Kavanaugh was confirmed the spin is Republicans have benefited, the Democrats have been pointing fingers, will it become a self-fulfilling prophecy?
Republicans are spinmasters, they understand the game, the Democrats are wimps who believe in their hearts they’re on the right side and should win and when they don’t they whine. GROW A PAIR!
Oh, can I say that?
Now that’s one place the Democrats have lost the plot, with the political correctness, the trigger warnings, the decision to offend no one. Get over it, go on the playground, your mommy and daddy cannot defend you there, you’ve got to fight for your right to party, and the Democrats keep laying down arms until…
Taylor Swift takes a side.
music  pop_music  politics  Dems  lefsetz 
5 days ago by rgl7194
Taylor Swift Makes Rare Political Statement, Endorses Democratic candidates | Consequence of Sound
"In the past I’ve been reluctant to publicly voice my political opinions, but due to several events in my life... I feel very differently about that now"
In the past, Taylor Swift has been criticized for staying political silent, especially during the 2016 President election. Now, though, ahead of the November midterms, Swift has publicly endorsed Democratic Senate candidate Phil Bredesen and Democratic Congressman Jim Cooper, who are both running in her home state of Tennessee.
“I’m writing this post about the upcoming midterm elections on November 6th, in which I’ll be voting in the state of Tennessee. In the past I’ve been reluctant to publicly voice my political opinions, but due to several events in my life and in the world in the past two years, I feel very differently about that now,” begins Swift in a lengthy statement posted to Instagram on Sunday night.
music  pop_music  politics  Dems 
5 days ago by rgl7194
The answer to GOP dog whistles? Democrats should talk more about race, not less. - The Washington Post
Since Donald Trump’s ascension to the White House, various political insiders have warned Democrats not to talk about race issues or what they term “identity politics” — a phrase that intentionally downgrades a raft of critical concerns. In an op-ed last year, for instance, Mark Penn, a former consultant to both Bill and Hillary Clinton, and Andrew Stein, a former New York City Council president, said Democrats had lost support among “working-class voters” (read: white working-class voters) because their politics were “mired too often in political correctness, transgender bathroom issues and policies offering more help to undocumented immigrants than to the heartland.” In New York magazine, Briahna Joy Gray argued that “identity politics, despite its benefits, has the potential to be most dangerous.” Even Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) cautioned after the election that “it is not good enough for somebody to say, ‘Hey, I’m a Latina. Vote for me.’ . . . One of the struggles that you’re going to be seeing in the Democratic Party is whether we go beyond identity politics.”
If they want to stay relevant on the ballot and win back centrist voters who defected to Trump, these critics say, liberals should avoid identity politics and focus on economic concerns.
politics  gov2.0  racism  Dems  economics 
7 weeks ago by rgl7194
Beto O’Rourke Shares Song Feat. Cedric Bixler-Zavala | New Music | Consequence of Sound
He also recalls his time in El Paso's DIY scene and meeting Leslie Feist
By now, you’ve probably heard the name Beto O’Rourke. The hunky Democratic Texas congressman is currently leading a campaign to take away the Senate seat from under Ted Cruz’s corrupt fat ass and, well, he actually has a shot in doing exactly that. It’s kind of crazy.
More recently, however, O’Rourke’s musical past came into question, thanks to an incredibly stupid intern running the @TexasGOP Twitter account. The morons over there actually thought his ties to artists like Cedric Bixler-Zavala would be seen as lame.
gov2.0  politics  congress  Dems  music 
7 weeks ago by rgl7194
Texas GOP Mocks Dem. Senate Candidate for Being in Band | Politics | Consequence of Sound
What better way to slam a guy than pointing out how cool he is
With the midterm elections coming up, voters everywhere are looking to rebuke of the current political leadership at the ballot box. In Texas, that’s led to a surprisingly close senate between entrenched incumbent Republican Ted Cruz and upstart Democratic US Representative Beto O’Rourke. The latter is building a strong base amongst young voters, thanks in no small part to his views on cannabis legalization, immigration reform, and single-payer healthcare.
gov2.0  politics  congress  Dems  music  twitter 
7 weeks ago by rgl7194
“It Seems Like Iowa in 2007”: Is Beto O’Rourke the Left’s Obama-Like Answer to Trump in 2020? | Vanity Fair
O’Rourke offers not just a path to victory in Texas but an antidote to the entire stupid artifice of American politics in the Trump era. He’s authentic, full of energy, and stripped of consultant-driven sterility. On what planet is Beto O’Rourke not a presidential contender, even if he loses?
By now you’ve probably heard a lot about Beto O’Rourke and his surprisingly durable challenge against Ted Cruz in bright red Texas. You’ve heard about how he’s visited all 254 Texas counties in his Toyota Tundra. You’ve seen videos of him sweating through a button-down shirt at one of his jam-packed town halls. You’ve watched the rangy 45-year-old congressman skateboard through a Whataburger parking lot in Brownsville. And if you’re following the 2018 midterms, you know that O’Rourke only trails Cruz by a single digit while running an unabashedly progressive campaign, making Democrats around the country salivate at the prospect of a blue wave crashing everywhere from Galveston to El Paso.
politics  gov2.0  Dems 
7 weeks ago by rgl7194
Elizabeth Warren's Definition of Capitalism - The Atlantic
A conversation with the Democratic senator about why she’s doubling down on market competition at a moment when her party is flirting with socialism
While so much of the action on the American left in recent months has come in the form of revived enthusiasm for socialism, Senator Elizabeth Warren has positioned herself quite differently. During the past two weeks, she has expounded about the prospects for capitalism in a much-covered speech and in a Wall Street Journal op-ed.  Instead of championing the system’s demise, she presents herself as its savior.
Embedded in her musings were two aggressive proposals for overhauling American business. One is the Accountable Capitalism Act, which would require the largest corporations to allow workers to choose 40 percent of their board seats. The proposal is meant to provide an antidote to short-term thinking in the biggest businesses—and to short-circuit the ease with which CEOs make decisions that enrich themselves at the expense of workers and the underlying health of their firm. A similar system exists in Germany, and it goes by the name “codetermination.”
gov2.0  politics  congress  Dems  capitalism 
7 weeks ago by rgl7194
Warren’s New Goal: Actually Draining the Swamp - WhoWhatWhy
Perhaps the GQ headline put it best: “Sen. Elizabeth Warren Chose a Hell of a Day to Unveil Her Sweeping Anti-Corruption Bill.”
That phrase could be taken two ways: the evils Warren (D-MA) targeted were dramatized on August 21, when she unveiled her anti-corruption package in a hard-hitting speech at the National Press Club. That, of course, was the day that Paul Manafort, former chair of Donald Trump’s presidential campaign, was convicted of tax and bank fraud, and Trump’s long-time personal lawyer Michael Cohen pleaded guilty to tax and bank fraud as well as violating campaign finance law.
With so much breaking news, the big mainstream media sites did not have much time to actually report what she proposed.  
And when Warren did get some space, the media largely viewed her anti-corruption pitch as an indictment of Trump. But from the outset, Warren made clear that wasn’t the case. “The problem is far bigger than Trump,” she said.
There’s a “crisis of faith” in government now, and fewer than one in five Americans trust that federal policymakers will do the right thing most of the time, she said. In 1958, 73 percent of Americans put their trust in Washington.
gov2.0  politics  congress  corruption  Dems 
7 weeks ago by rgl7194
The 5 Big Takeaways From Our House Forecast | FiveThirtyEight
Democrats are favored to gain control of the House of Representatives in this year’s midterm elections, according to the FiveThirtyEight forecast model. But — a very FiveThirtyEight-ish sentence follows — the range of possible outcomes is wide and Democrats’ prospects are far from certain. Relatively small shifts could allow Republicans to keep control of the House, or could turn a blue wave into a tsunami.
What’s behind all of this? Our methodology post goes into a lot more detail about how our forecasts are calculated. But that explanation is rather abstract, so in this article, I’m going to focus on how these factors are playing out given what we know about the political environment this year.
gov2.0  election  congress  politics  Dems  538 
8 weeks ago by rgl7194
In case of Mueller firing, break glass: Democrats prep an emergency plan
Congressional action and protest rallies are among the contingencies being planned if Trump tries to shut down the Russia probe.
WASHINGTON — It would start within minutes of special counsel Robert Mueller being fired — a torrent of activity ricocheting through the halls of Congress and over television airwaves, including nearly a thousand protests being prepped from the Virgin Islands to Alaska.
Democrats have drafted a wide-ranging contingency plan should Mueller be fired or President Donald Trump take other steps to quash the Russia investigation, like firing Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein or pardoning key witnesses.
Of top concern in the first 24 hours of such a move would be preventing Mueller’s documents from being destroyed and his team disbanded, according to interviews with nearly a dozen lawmakers, congressional aides, Democratic operatives and attorneys involved in the planning.
corruption  crime  DOJ  gov2.0  legal  mueller  politics  russia  special_counsel  trump  congress  Dems 
8 weeks ago by rgl7194
Dems on fire in Farmington for McMurray rally - News - MPNnow - Canandaigua, NY
FARMINGTON — Farmington not long long ago didn’t have a Democratic committee.
“Here were are, six months later, with 100 in a room,” said John Hurley, chair of the Ontario County Democratic Committee, inside a noisy Mertensia Park Lodge Tuesday evening filled with people waving Vote McMurray signs.
Democrat Nate McMurray, the Grand Island town supervisor running for the 27th Congressional District, arrived to a cheering crowd energized by recent developments. U.S. Rep. Chris Collins, who was to be McMurray’s Republican opponent, was indicted last week on insider trading charges and then suspended his campaign. Now, Republicans are scrambling to find a way to replace Collins on the ballot.
“With the recent indictment on, it is chaos for the Republicans and its seems pretty on our side,” McMurray remarked during his address to a packed lodge. “The biggest worry is that he will coast through this — the Republican party will do anything to keep this seat, even prop this man up,” he said.
“It’s about to get uglier,” McMurray said. “There is a lot of anger out there — the good news is they know who he is now.”
Dems  victor  gov2.0  politics 
9 weeks ago by rgl7194
What The Rise Of Kamala Harris Tells Us About The Democratic Party | FiveThirtyEight
In the days after Hillary Clinton’s defeat, the two people who seemed like the Democratic Party’s most obvious 2020 candidates, then-Vice President Joe Biden and Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, hinted that Clinton had gone too far in talking about issues of identity. “It is not good enough for somebody to say, ‘I’m a woman; vote for me,’” Sanders said. Other liberals lamented that the party had lost white voters in such states as Ohio and Iowa who had supported Barack Obama, and they said Democrats needed to dial back the identity talk to win them back.
But that view never took hold among party activists. Liberal-leaning women were emboldened to talk about gender more, not less, after the 2016 election. We’ve had women’s marches and women running for office in greater numbers than ever — all while emphasizing their gender. President Trump’s moves kept identity issues at the forefront, too, and gave Democrats an opportunity both to defend groups they view as disadvantaged and to attack the policies of a president they hate.
politics  gov2.0  Dems  congress  immigration  538  women 
10 weeks ago by rgl7194
Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Is Driving New Energy And Money To Progressive Candidates | HuffPost
After defeating a Democratic Party boss, she’s a new kingmaker — and even the establishment wants in.
At a Democratic gubernatorial candidate forum in Detroit on Monday, progressive underdog Abdul El-Sayed knew just the thing to get the crowd going.
“Who here has heard of Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez?” he asked.
Had they ever. More than 600 miles away from Ocasio-Cortez’s district, the crowd of several hundred Michiganders roared with excitement.
“She showed us that when we are honest about our message, when we are truthful about where our money comes from, when we are willing to speak clearly about the policies we believe in, and we are willing to stand up to the establishment, we win elections,” El-Sayed continued.
Dems  gen_z  gov2.0  politics 
10 weeks ago by rgl7194
Has the Right-Wing Spin Machine Met Its Match? - WhoWhatWhy
Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is the perfect figurehead for the progressive movement in the US. At 28, she represents a new generation of Americans. As a Hispanic woman, she represents minorities. As a Democratic Socialist, she represents different solutions to the growing inequality in the US.
But don’t be surprised if conservatives, who will attack her for precisely the reasons listed above, will be the ones to talk about Ocasio-Cortez the most. To them, the Democratic Socialist who shocked the political world by beating Democratic incumbent Joseph Crowley in the primary for New York’s 14th Congressional District, is the ideal person to scare their base into action.
politics  gov2.0  Dems  gen_z 
10 weeks ago by rgl7194
Democrats Are Wrong About Republicans. Republicans Are Wrong About Democrats. | FiveThirtyEight
Welcome to Secret Identity, our regular column on identity and its role in politics and policy.
The defining divide in American politics is probably between Republicans and Democrats. It encapsulates all our other divides — by race, education, religion and more — and it’s growing.
This partisan divide is such a big part of people’s political identities, in fact, that it’s reinforced simply by “negative partisanship,” or loyalty to a party because you don’t like the other party. A Pew Research Center poll from last year found that about 40 percent of both Democrats and Republicans belong to their party because they oppose the other party’s values, rather than because they are particularly aligned with their own party.
politics  Dems  GOP  538 
june 2018 by rgl7194
Why The Republican Party Elects So Few Women | FiveThirtyEight
There has been a lot of buzz recently about the wave of women running for office in 2018. It’s record-breaking. But that’s not quite right. At least, it’s too broad.
There are a lot of Democratic women signing up as candidates and winning primaries, particularly for the U.S. House. So far this cycle, according to the Center for Women and American Politics at Rutgers University, 350 Democratic women have filed to run for the House, compared with 118 Republican women. Democratic women have won 105 House primaries, compared with just 25 by Republican women.
That pattern isn’t new. The overall male skew of Congress gets a lot of attention, and rightly so, but that skew looks very different in each party. There are almost three times as many Democratic women as Republican women serving in Congress — and November’s elections might exacerbate the disparity. A Democratic wave could both send many more Democratic women to Congress and also end the careers of several Republican female incumbents.
Dems  GOP  politics  election  women  gender  538 
june 2018 by rgl7194
My primary vote goes to Rachel Barnhart
Democrats face a hostile environment due to President Trump and the current GOP in Congress. America’s future economic viability, international standing, and foundations of justice and fairness (our core values!) hang in the balance. Rachel Barnhart is the right choice in the Democratic primary due to her skills and experience. To support her progressive positions she brings strength to talk truth to power, intelligence to understand the complexity of issues, skills in communicating with our community, and a profound love of Rochester.
politics  rochester  rachel_barnhart  new_york  congress  Dems 
june 2018 by rgl7194
Doug Jones Thinks He’s Supposed To Be Here | FiveThirtyEight
ou probably know Alabama’s new senator, Doug Jones, because he narrowly won a special election last year against a man accused of molesting underage girls. But there are probably quite a few things you don’t know about him. His first name is actually Gordon, and he is left-handed,1 hitches his head a bit when he’s making a point and is what experts on emotions might call an “active listener.”
That last point dawned on me while I was sitting in the back of an SUV as he praised the virtues of the peanut butter factory we’d just been to — “the technology!” — and we jostled along a central Alabama road on a late May afternoon. Throughout a sweaty, hair-netted tour, he had nodded and peered into things and patiently asked questions. (I, meanwhile, had strained to hear over the nut-rumbling din and contemplated a literal death by peanut butter underneath some sort of hot, belching still that smelled unnervingly like cookies.) The visit was a reminder of just how much the life of a politician is filled with interactions that are mundane for him but momentous for the other person; the conscientious officeholder knows that a bit of attentive listening can go a long way. That’s perhaps doubly the case for Jones, an Alabama Democrat wading through his state’s overwhelmingly Republican politics. Sometimes, he might not agree with what people have to say to him, but, by God, Jones will smile, nod and hear them out.
gov2.0  politics  Dems  538  racism 
june 2018 by rgl7194
In the U.S., the left trusts the mainstream media more than the right, and the gap is growing
s Facebook moves to privilege “broadly trusted” sources in its News Feed, our research — more of which you’ll find in this year’s Reuters Digital News Report — shows that broadcasters and newspapers are more trusted than digital-born outlets across a number of countries.
Earlier this year, Facebook announced that it would prioritize news from brands that its users perceive as trustworthy, as part of a response to allegations related to the spread of misinformation on the platform. “As part of our ongoing quality surveys, we will now ask people whether they’re familiar with a news source and, if so, whether they trust that source,” Mark Zuckerberg wrote. Facebook measures news brand trust by asking its users if they have heard of a news brand and then to rate it as trustworthy from 1 (entirely) to 5 (not at all).
Critics have speculated that allowing ordinary people to decide what news sources should be deemed trustworthy could result in niche or highly partisan sources being prioritized at the expense of legacy brands that sometimes offer more balanced coverage. Others have worried that sources that produce the most widely shared content could be seen as the most trustworthy. However, data from the Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism’s 2018 Digital News Report shows that on average people have fairly conventional views about what news brands to trust — views that probably differ little from expert consensus. [Ed. note: Research also suggests that Facebook’s plan could work well, but with some important caveats.]
In our survey, people were asked to rate a number of the most popular news brands from 0 (not at all trustworthy) to 10 (completely trustworthy). They could also respond that they had never heard of the news brand. The data presented here represents the views of the online population of each country (unlikely to differ significantly from the views of Facebook users).
In the U.S., we can see that people tend to place more trust in mainstream, legacy news brands. Digital-born and/or partisan sources are trusted less. The users of each brand tended to trust it more than the general population, but particularly so for more right-leaning brands like Fox News and Breitbart.
news  fake_news  trust  Dems  GOP  conservative  liberal  USA  uk 
june 2018 by rgl7194
Democrats’ Horrible 2018 Senate Map Couldn’t Have Come At A Better Time | FiveThirtyEight
You hear it all the time: The 2018 Senate map is bad, even “brutal,” for Democrats. Of the 35 seats on the ballot this cycle, 26 are held by senators who caucus with the Democrats, and just nine are held by Republicans. Democrats must flip two of those nine — without losing any seats of their own — in order to take a Senate majority. That’s not going to be easy given that only one of those Republican-held seats is from a state carried by Hillary Clinton in 2016. At the same time, 10 Democratic incumbents are running for re-election in states won by President Trump, including deep red ones like North Dakota and West Virginia.
But while the 2018 map is the party’s steepest uphill climb in a long time, defending red-state Senate seats isn’t a new challenge for Democrats. In fact, they’ve gotten pretty good at it over the years. They haven’t had a choice: It gets less ink than the gerrymandered districts in the U.S. House, but the Senate — which reserves the same number of seats for a sparsely populated state as for a crowded one — has an inherent Republican bias as well. Within the past 25 years, Democratic majorities in the Senate — up through 1995, briefly from 2001 to 2002 and then finally from 2007 to 2015 — were possible because more Democrats represented red states than Republicans represented blue states. To wield a majority in 2019 and beyond, Democrats will simply (OK, not so simply) have to pull off the same trick.
gov2.0  politics  election  congress  Dems  GOP  538 
may 2018 by rgl7194
Democrats discover another institutional check on Trump - The Washington Post
When discussing the institutional safeguards against President Trump’s overreach, many commentators have pointed to the courts, the free press, the potential (more theoretical, as long as Republicans have majorities in the House and Senate) for congressional oversight and even the military (e.g. refusing to accept a first-strike order that does not comply with the laws of war). Less discussed, because Democrats have been less enthusiastic about its use in other contexts, is the deployment of federalism to counteract a misguided or paralyzed federal government. However, increasingly it seems that local and state authorities and legislatures are guaranteeing some policy continuity on issues that progressives care deeply about and hobbling Trump’s most dangerous plans.
Dems  state  politics  trump  gov2.0  guns 
april 2018 by rgl7194
Sex and the City actress Cynthia Nixon is running for governor of New York | Consequence of Sound
Nixon is running as a Democrat, setting up a primary battle against the state's current governor, Andrew Cuomo
Sex and the City star Cynthia Nixon is running for governor of New York.
The 51-year-old actress launched her candidacy on Monday. She’ll be running as a Democrat, setting up a primary battle against the state’s current governor, Andrew Cuomo.
In a video announcing her candidacy, Nixon cited income inequality, health care, mass incarceration, and New York City’s deteriorating subway system as some of the issues she plans to focus on. “I love New York. I’ve never wanted to live anywhere else. But something has to change. We want our government to work again,” she says in the video. She’s also launched a campaign website, which you can find here.
Dems  gov2.0  new_york  election  politics  actress 
march 2018 by rgl7194
Pennsylvania’s New Map Helps Democrats. But It’s Not A Democratic Gerrymander. | FiveThirtyEight
Pennsylvania’s new congressional district map, released Monday by the state Supreme Court, is sure to improve Democrats’ electoral outlook in the state. Over the long term, Democrats can expect to occupy one to two additional seats compared with the current map, according to a FiveThirtyEight analysis. (The state’s congressional delegation currently has 12 Republicans and five Democrats. One seat is vacant.)
The court ordered that the map be redrawn after finding that the current one, which was enacted by the Republican state legislature in 2011, was a partisan gerrymander and violated the state’s constitution. (Republicans were given a chance to submit a substitute plan — which they did. And the Democratic governor, Tom Wolf, was given a chance to reject the plan — which he did.) The map submitted by Republicans probably would have benefited them less than the current map does, but it would still have been better for the GOP than what would be expected based on the partisan makeup of the state. Because the legislature and the governor couldn’t come to an agreement, the court stepped in.
gov2.0  politics  state  gerrymandering  Dems  538 
march 2018 by rgl7194
Rage Against the Machine’s Democratic Convention gig to be released | Consequence of Sound
The six-song recording will be available in limited quantities for Record Store Day
For this year’s Record Store Day, a very special rarity from Rage Against the Machine is being let loose from the vault: a live recording of their 2000 concert protesting the American political party system.
Zach de la Rocha, Tom Morello & co. threw down a riotous concert in Los Angeles, holding it directly across from the Staples Center where the Democratic National Convention was being held. Their set, available in recorded form for the first time ever, features a total of six songs, including The Battle of Los Angeles hits “Testify”, “Guerrilla Radio”, and “Sleep Now in the Fire”.
RATM  concert  2000s  RSD  record  politics  Dems 
march 2018 by rgl7194
White Democrats Have Gotten Way More Liberal On Identity Issues | FiveThirtyEight
The ongoing fight over funding the government — which may finally be on the verge of a long-term resolution — has centered in large part on immigration. Democrats want a replacement for the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, and if they settle for a deal without one, they’re likely to incur a good deal of wrath from their base.
That wrath probably would have been substantially milder even a few years ago. But there is a broader story happening here, according to public opinion polls and the moves of key elites in the party: Democrats have grown more liberal on issues of race, gender and identity — and not just the nonwhite and female Democrats.
gov2.0  politics  racism  sexism  Dems  liberal  538 
february 2018 by rgl7194
Why Democrats And Republicans Did A Sudden 180 On The FBI | FiveThirtyEight
President Trump is weighing allowing the release of the second of two memos addressing allegations of improper conduct by the FBI. The latest classified memo, drafted by Rep. Adam Schiff, the ranking Democrat on the House intelligence committee, allegedly defends the agency in a rebuttal to a memo that was released last week. The earlier memo was written at the direction of the committee chairman, California Republican Devin Nunes, and criticized the FBI’s surveillance methods in the early part of the Russia investigation.
The tussle over the two memos is leaving many observers with a sense of political whiplash. Democrats who were once quick to castigate the FBI and other intelligence agencies for overreaching on surveillance are now defending the agency’s need for secrecy. Meanwhile, Republicans like Nunes — who led the charge just a few months ago to pass legislation extending the government’s surveillance powers — are arguing that agents abused their authority.
gov2.0  congress  politics  Dems  GOP  FBI  538 
february 2018 by rgl7194
The Media Is Misreading How The Shutdown Blame Game Shook Out | FiveThirtyEight
Welcome to Pollapalooza, our weekly polling roundup. Today’s theme song is Sammy Davis Jr.’s rendition of “Chico and the Man” from the television show “Chico and the Man.”
Poll of the week
A new Quinnipiac University survey found that 32 percent of voters believe congressional Democrats were primarily responsible for the recent government shutdown; 31 percent blame President Trump, and 18 percent blame congressional Republicans. A number of news outlets have thus focused on the fact that Democrats and Trump are about equally to blame in the public’s eye. Quinnipiac’s own write-up of their poll led with this description.
I think, though, that’s a bad interpretation of the data.
gov2.0  politics  survey  trump  Dems  GOP  538 
january 2018 by rgl7194
Voting is just like driving: If you want to go backward, choose "R". If you want to go forward, choose "D". : PoliticalHumor
Voting is just like driving: If you want to go backward, choose "R". If you want to go forward, choose "D".
gov2.0  politics  humor  Dems  GOP  driving  quotes 
january 2018 by rgl7194
These 16 Democrats voted against reopening the government without protections for DREAMers – ThinkProgress
Six of them previously told ThinkProgress they would not support any legislation that bypassed protections for DREAMers.
Early Monday afternoon, the Senate voted 81-18 in favor of reopening the government with a short-term spending bill, following a failed vote on Friday evening that effectively shut it down. Among the 18 senators who voted “no” were 16 Democrats, six of whom previously told ThinkProgress they would reject any continuing resolution that did not include protections for recipients of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program.
The resolution is set to expire on February 8, at which point the government will once again run out of operating funds. That means Congress has three weeks to come up with a permanent fix for DACA.
gov2.0  politics  schumer  Dems  congress 
january 2018 by rgl7194
The Democrats’ Danger of Outrage Overload - WhoWhatWhy
On issue after issue, Americans reject the policies of President Donald Trump and his GOP cohorts in Congress. However, thanks to the Electoral College, shrewdly gerrymandered congressional districts, a distribution of Senate seats that favors small states that often elect Republicans, and deep-pocketed conservatives, the US has become a country in which what the majority wants has become irrelevant.
As a result, those opposing Trump see themselves confronted with an avalanche of legislation, nominees, regulations, executive orders and policies that they believe will do lasting harm to their country.
And while Trump promised his supporters that they would get “tired of winning,” as the president’s first year in office nears its end, his opponents are just tired.
The past week is a perfect illustration of what they are up against.
politics  gov2.0  trump  Dems 
january 2018 by rgl7194
Democrats Win Big. Thank Trump. | Rochester For All
It was a huge night for Democrats in Monroe County and across New York State. Democratic voters have been energized. They came out, something they don’t usually do in an off-year. The long-predicted Trump effect has taken down GOP candidates everywhere.
In the Sheriff’s race, Todd Baxter won big because Republicans joined with Democrats, many of whom were likely unaware of his conservative beliefs. Baxter is personable and energetic and the kind of politician Patrick O’Flynn is not. O’Flynn was in a box, because he couldn’t attract Democratic voters and couldn’t hold his base together in the face of a hardcore, charismatic Trumpster who knocked on lots and lots of doors. Baxter got a huge lift from radio host Bob Lonsberry, who rallied the Trump Republican block.
politics  rochester  election  trump  Dems  new_york  rachel_barnhart 
january 2018 by rgl7194
The DNC “cancer” is Donna Brazile.
Craven insiders—not joint fundraising agreements—are what’s destroying the party.
“Before I called Bernie Sanders, I lit a candle in my living room and put on some gospel music.” So begins, absurdly and promisingly, the most intriguing part of former DNC interim chair Donna Brazile’s already controversial and appropriately titled new book Hacks, which features a parade of Democratic consultants, DNC officials, and party insiders who Brazile blames for Hillary Clinton’s loss last November.
At the center of the book are three individuals Brazile calls the party’s “three titanic egos – Barack, Hillary, and Debbie,” who, according to her, “stripped the party to a shell for their own purposes.” Brazile’s allegations have roiled Democratic circles since Thursday, when Politico published an excerpt of the book detailing Brazile’s discovery of a joint fundraising agreement between the Democratic National Committee and the Clinton campaign that she says granted Clinton effective control of the party a year before she actually won the nomination. “The agreement [...] specified that in exchange for raising money and investing in the DNC, Hillary would control the party’s finances, strategy, and all the money raised,” Brazile writes. “Her campaign had the right of refusal of who would be the party communications director, and it would make final decisions on all the other staff.”
hillary  politics  gov2.0  election  Dems  money  corruption 
january 2018 by rgl7194
Memo Reveals Details of Hillary Clinton-DNC Deal - NBC News
WASHINGTON — The Democratic National Committee struck a deal with Hillary Clinton in 2015 that gave her campaign input on some party hiring and spending decisions, but required they be related only to preparations for the general election, according to a memo obtained by NBC News. It also left the door open for other candidates to make similar arrangements.
The document provides more context to the explosive claims made by former DNC Interim Chair Donna Brazile in a forthcoming book, an excerpt of which was published this week.
The August 26, 2015, memorandum of understanding from Clinton campaign manager Robby Mook to DNC CEO Amy Dacey details the relationship between Clinton's campaign and the DNC long before she won her party's nomination.
hillary  politics  gov2.0  election  Dems  money  corruption 
january 2018 by rgl7194
Donna Brazile's Curious Account of the 2016 Election - The Atlantic
The former DNC chair seems eager to jump on the Bernie Sanders bandwagon, but her claims of ignorance about party favoritism toward Hillary Clinton don’t add up.
For defeated politicians, the period after an election is for score-settling. For defeated political operatives, it’s about positioning for the next race. And if a juicy excerpt from Donna Brazile’s new book Hacks is an indication, the longtime Democratic operative and former interim chair of the Democratic National Party seems to think the future is Bernie Sanders.
Brazile’s piece, in Politico Magazine, is a fascinating document, though maybe not always for the reasons intended. It answers some questions about the 2016 race, including why Hillary Clinton’s campaign didn’t move to depose DNC Chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz sooner, but also raises other questions about the management of the DNC, including Brazile’s own moves. And it shows Brazile tossing soil on the Clinton era’s coffin.
Dems  gov2.0  politics  election  hillary 
january 2018 by rgl7194
Trump Is Radicalizing the Democratic Party - The Atlantic
For years, data have shown that conservatives have moved much farther right than progressives have moved left, but that trend may be ending.
For years, a cadre of left-leaning, political-science-aligned or -curious pundits have offered a simple diagnosis of what ails American politics: the Grand Old Party.
That’s not an oversimplification of the stance. In 2012, for example, my colleague Norm Ornstein and Tom Mann wrote a Washington Post column titled, “Let’s just say it: The Republicans are the problem.” The critique hinged on what they call asymmetric polarization—yes, politics is more polarized than any time in recent memory, but that is not (the argument goes) because both parties have become more extreme. Nor is it a factor of partisan sorting, the idea that while both parties used to have liberal and conservative wings, the Democrats are now a uniformly liberal party and the Republicans a uniformly conservative one. Rather, the Democratic Party moved slightly left, but the Republican Party has moved far right.
politics  gov2.0  trump  Dems 
january 2018 by rgl7194
On Safari in Trump's America - The Atlantic
The country’s elites are desperate to figure out what they got wrong in 2016. But can they handle the truth?
It was the hippies who drove Nancy Hale over the edge. She had spent three days listening respectfully to the real people of Middle America, and finally she couldn’t take it any longer.
She turned off the tape recorder and took several deep breaths, leaning back in the passenger seat of the rented GMC Yukon. The sun had just come out from behind a mass of clouds, casting a gleam on the rain-soaked parking lot in rural Wisconsin.
Hale, who is 65 and lives in San Francisco, is a career activist who got her start protesting nuclear plants and nuclear testing in the 1970s. In 2005, she was one of the founders of Third Way, a center-left think tank, and it was in that capacity that she and four colleagues had journeyed from both coasts to the town of Viroqua, Wisconsin, as part of a post-election listening tour. They had come on a well-meaning mission: to better understand their fellow Americans, whose political behavior in the last election had left them confused and distressed.
gov2.0  politics  Dems 
january 2018 by rgl7194
Clinton Campaign and Democratic Party Helped Pay for Russia Trump Dossier - The New York Times
WASHINGTON — The presidential campaign of Hillary Clinton and the Democratic National Committee paid for research that was included in a dossier made public in January that contained salacious claims about connections between Donald J. Trump, his associates and Russia.
A spokesperson for a law firm said on Tuesday that it had hired Washington-based researchers last year to gather damaging information about Mr. Trump on numerous subjects — including possible ties to Russia — on behalf of the Clinton campaign and the D.N.C.
hillary  Dems  trump  russia  gov2.0  politics 
january 2018 by rgl7194
The Voices in Blue America’s Head - The New York Times
t was early November, the day before Virginia’s elections, and the Democratic cavalry — in the form of four podcast hosts crammed into a Lyft — was coming to the aid of Lt. Gov. Ralph Northam. “Do you want to kick things off with something light and funny?” Jon Favreau asked Jon Lovett as their ride — an S.U.V. outfitted with neon lights and a disco ball that were a bit discombobulating before 9 o’clock in the morning — took them to a Richmond campaign office. They’d be rallying volunteers canvassing for Northam, the Democratic candidate for governor, who was at the time commanding a perilously narrow lead in the polls. “I want to go toward the end for some earnestness,” Favreau said.
“You should do something real message-y,” Tommy Vietor proposed.
“I’m expecting the ‘race speech’ for G.O.T.V.,” Dan Pfeiffer chimed in.
nytimes  gov2.0  politics  podcast  Dems  liberal  talk_show 
january 2018 by rgl7194
Seven Reasons the Left Is Losing - The Atlantic
Advice and constructive criticism from observers who believe that America would benefit from a healthier opposition to the governing coalition
President Trump wields great power. Those who believe him to be a cruel, dishonest man who is glaringly unqualified to preside over the executive branch or U.S. foreign policy, should welcome challenges from the left, right, and center to his administration.
But is the American left capable of political success right now?
Its recent win-loss record is poor, whether one begins with the Seattle WTO protests, the anti-war marches of 2003, the push for immigration reform, Occupy Wall Street, or Black Lives Matter. And observing the left during the first 100 days of the Trump administration, I am beginning to despair that its pathologies are growing in strength at the very moment when the worst of the right is ascendant, too.
I am not a Leftist. But I want a country where the best versions of left and right are vying against one another—and one where overdue reforms are made to the immigration, finance, and criminal-justice systems. I believe constructive criticism can improve any coalition. And such criticism is on offer from leftists, liberals, conservatives, and others who believe that a healthy left has something vital to offer America.
What follows is a roundup of critiques offered in that spirit. It is neither exhaustive nor definitive. But I hope that it can serve a starting point for an informative conversation.
politics  gov2.0  strategy  Dems  liberal 
december 2017 by rgl7194
Liberals Need to Take Their Fingers Out of Their Ears - The New York Times
Given the triumph of contemporary conservatism, it may be time for liberals to take a look at the vulnerabilities of their own orthodoxies.
Democrats who yearn for President Trump to be taken down should examine this list of Republican strengths: victories in all three contested special elections for the House of Representatives this year; Trump’s 82 percent approval rating among Republican voters; his success with the current tax bill; his swift evisceration of key regulatory policies; the Gorsuch appointment to the Supreme Court; economic growth of over 3 percent in the last two quarters; the Dow Jones topping 24,000; and the unemployment rate dropping to 4.1 percent.
gov2.0  politics  Dems  nytimes 
december 2017 by rgl7194
Can the Two-Party System Survive Internal and External Divisions? - WhoWhatWhy
The deep divisions within the US — not just between liberals and conservatives but also within each of the two major parties — are giving Americans the glimpse of a chance to rid themselves of the entrenched two-party system responsible for a big part of the country’s current malaise.
Granted, it’s still a long shot — but, for the first time in generations, there is an opportunity to upset the balance of political power in a meaningful way. In fact, there are two opportunities.
First, we need to briefly look at how we got here: Over past decades, the partisan divide in the US has increased. This is also reflected in Congress, where Republicans have gotten much more conservative on average since 1980 and Democrats somewhat more liberal — in particular on social issues.  
politics  gov2.0  GOP  Dems 
november 2017 by rgl7194
Impeachment Is Fool’s Gold for Democrats - WhoWhatWhy
Seeking a cheap high, a large group of Americans is at risk of destroying its dreams and aspirations. No, we’re not talking about the millions of people addicted to opioids but rather about Democrats who are on track to blow their chance to beat a historically unpopular president.
And if they can’t manage to defeat Donald Trump — whose approval rating sits at 35% even though the economy is humming — then Democrats simply don’t deserve to win.
While Trump’s dismal numbers should be good news for his opponents, it appears that the sizeable margin is keeping the Democrats from doing what is needed to win back the House of Representatives next fall. The president is so unpopular that many of them seem to think all they have to do is oppose him.
And they seem to be intoxicated by the thought of finding some way to get rid of Trump before his term is up.
gov2.0  politics  trump  Dems 
november 2017 by rgl7194
George Soros Transfers Billions to Open Society Foundations - The New York Times
George Soros, the billionaire hedge fund manager and a major Democratic donor, has given $18 billion to his Open Society Foundations, one of the largest transfers of wealth ever made by a private donor to a single foundation.
The gift, made quietly over the past several years but disclosed only on Tuesday, has transformed Open Society into the second-biggest philanthropic organization in the United States, behind the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. It will also place Mr. Soros, a lightning rod for conservative critics, squarely in the middle of the social and political debates convulsing the country.
gov2.0  politics  nytimes  Dems  money 
october 2017 by rgl7194
Ajit Pai’s anti-net neutrality plan gets the facts and law wrong, lawmakers say | Ars Technica
FCC accused of prioritizing "raw dollars" over small businesses and consumers.
The Federal Communications Commission proposal to repeal net neutrality rules ignores the public interest by favoring Internet service providers over other businesses and individuals, Democratic lawmakers told the FCC today.
FCC Chairman Ajit Pai's proposal to undo the rules "impermissibly ignores the Commission’s core mandate to fully consider the public interest before taking action," violating the commission's obligations under the Communications Act, the Democrats wrote in an FCC filing opposing Pai's plan. The lawmakers also questioned Pai's independence from President Donald Trump.
fcc  net_neutrality  politics  gov2.0  Dems 
august 2017 by rgl7194
The Democrats Unveiled a New Slogan and It's Infuriatingly Stupid
Oh no.
In the midst of a reeling Republican presidential administration that may or may not be imploding in spectacular fashion even as you read this sentence, the Democrats have rolled out their slogan for the 2018 midterm congressional elections. My friends, the fight for the soul of this country is in the hands of people who came up with... this:
Congratulations to those of you who reflexively whispered "...Papa John's" before burying your head in your arms and sobbing quietly.
Dems  politics  gov2.0  marketing 
july 2017 by rgl7194
Lack of a Vision for America Is Hurting Democrats - WhoWhatWhy
Just Being Against Trump Won’t Win Elections
Democrats and liberal pundits can’t seem to make up their minds whether their string of recent special election losses in conservative districts is a sign that they are doomed — or constitutes a bunch of moral victories. Here is a hint: Moral victors don’t get a vote in Congress.
It is true that the Democratic candidates, who were not exactly the crème of the crop, outperformed expectations in deep-red Kansas, Montana, Georgia and South Carolina. On the other hand, Jon Ossoff and allied groups spent more than $30 million on the most winnable of the four races and still lost.
The lesson that Democrats should learn from these painful defeats is that they can’t rely solely on President Donald Trump’s unpopularity if they want to win back the House in 2018. The special elections have shown that people aren’t just going to show up in droves to send yet another message to Washington.
gov2.0  politics  Dems 
june 2017 by rgl7194
This Might Be the Worst Democratic Freak-out Ever
Karen Handel’s close-but-not-that-close win in Georgia’s sixth district, the fourth Republican victory in four special elections, has officially made the party’s failure to capture a House seat in 2017 a capital-T Thing. “Let’s be clear: something ain’t working for Democrats, party insiders privately tell us,” reports Politico Playbook. Representative Ro Khanna, sounding like an upset fan calling into a sports talk radio show, called for the party to “fire its consultants” and replace them with three of his favorite opinion journalists. “Deep down [Democrats] know they needed – and still need – a win in a high-profile race in which the fight was between Trump/Republicans and Pelosi/Democrats,” writes Chris Cillizza. “There are no moral victories in politics. No matter what the losing side says — and they always say this — the only thing that really matters when it comes to special elections is the ‘W’ and the ‘L.’”
gov2.0  politics  Dems 
june 2017 by rgl7194
Hillary Clinton, Please Exit Stage Left - WhoWhatWhy
As first lady, senator, secretary of state and failed presidential candidate, Hillary Clinton has been one of the defining Democrats of her time. But she now has to do one last thing for the party she has dedicated most of her adult life to. Clinton has to step back and let others take over.
The urge to explain how she could possibly have lost to Donald Trump must be overwhelming. After all, she was defeated by somebody who could hardly be less equipped to serve as president, while Barack Obama called her the “most qualified” candidate ever.
politics  gov2.0  Dems  hillary  election 
june 2017 by rgl7194
Democrats Don’t Need Trump’s Voters To Retake The House | FiveThirtyEight
Stop me if you’ve seen a headline (or five) that proclaims something along the lines of: “Most Trump voters still support Trump.” Typically, the article includes quotes from Trump voters in Pennsylvania or Michigan. Sometimes it revolves around polling showing people don’t “regret” voting for Trump. The takeaway is usually: Trump still has the support of his base, which means Democrats haven’t cracked the Trump nut yet.
But here’s the thing: Democrats don’t need to crack that nut by 2018; Trump can hang on to most — if not all — of his base, and Democrats could still clean up in the midterm elections. Checking in with Trump’s supporters is worthwhile. But don’t mistake their level of satisfaction for a political prediction.
trump  politics  gov2.0  election  Dems  538 
may 2017 by rgl7194
Even The Biggest Scandals Can’t Kill Party Loyalty | FiveThirtyEight
There have been lots of questions, especially among liberals, about when congressional Republicans might turn on President Trump, particularly in the wake of his controversial firing of FBI Director James Comey and the reports late Monday that he compromised classified information. The assumption behind these questions is that at a certain point, something so outrageous will be revealed about Trump that the resulting scandal will … er … trump party loyalty.
But, at least historically speaking, even the biggest scandals don’t wash away partisanship.
gov2.0  politics  538  GOP  Dems 
may 2017 by rgl7194
Moving Past the Left-Right Divide - WhoWhatWhy
Much of the country seems sharply divided. But looks can be deceiving. A big part of the division can be explained by the assumption that you’re either on Team Blue or Team Red.
The right is cast as wanting little to no government, while the left advocates for big government. But upon closer examination, this doesn’t hold up: both the left and right seem to want big government; the question is, where?
The right traditionally wants a large military and ever increasing defense budgets, while the left favors domestic entitlement programs like Social Security and Medicare.
Those not wishing to get caught in this perilous conflict don’t really have a spot on the traditional political spectrum because it only offers a binary choice.
gov2.0  politics  Dems  GOP 
april 2017 by rgl7194
Tom Perez Isn’t As Liberal As Keith Ellison, But He’s Still Pretty Progressive | FiveThirtyEight
The race for chair of the Democratic National Committee came to an end today in Atlanta when former Labor Secretary Tom Perez was elected to the position, beating out Minnesota Rep. Keith Ellison in a race that had come to be framed as a battle between the party’s Obama-era establishment and the burgeoning progressive wing of Sen. Bernie Sanders. Conceding the race, Ellison, who was backed by Sanders, pleaded with his supporters to “give everything you’ve got to support Chairman Perez.” Some Ellison backers in the room, wearing the candidate’s green T-shirts and upset by the vote, chanted in protest.
politics  gov2.0  Dems  538 
february 2017 by rgl7194
Kirsten Gillibrand and the Anti-Trump Left: 2020 Foresight? - NYTimes.com
When David A. Paterson, then governor of New York, appointed Kirsten E. Gillibrand to fill Hillary Clinton’s Senate seat in 2009, there was little feeling that she would become a key voice in a movement of resistance from the left. As a Blue Dog congressional Democrat representing an upstate district, Ms. Gillibrand had an A rating from the National Rifle Association. She had an uptown bearing but talked about the guns she kept tucked under her bed. Working as a young lawyer, she defended the tobacco industry.
Recounting the skepticism that surrounded her, Senator Gillibrand wrote in her 2014 memoir, “Off the Sidelines,” that she was regarded as “a parakeet,” without original thoughts of her own. Upon Ms. Gillibrand’s appointment, the Spanish-language newspaper El Diario ran an unflattering picture of her with the headline: “Anti-inmigrante.” Representative Nydia M. Velázquez considered her a poor choice for the job; others compared her to Tracy Flick, invoking Reese Witherspoon’s portrayal of a grating teenager whose averageness is obscured by her ruthless desire to ascend in the movie “Election.”
politics  gov2.0  Dems  gillibrand  new_york  nytimes 
february 2017 by rgl7194
What Democrats should learn from Republicans - CNN.com
(CNN)Politics ain't beanbag, so the saying goes. And Republicans live by these words.
When Senate Democrats on the Finance Committee finally showed some grit by boycotting the vote over President Donald Trump's nominees for secretary of treasury, Steven Mnuchin, and secretary of health and human services, Tom Price -- two of the most controversial picks to come from the White House -- Republicans simply changed the rules.
Although the committee rules stipulate that there needed to be a quorum with one member from the minority party present to vote on a nominee, Chairman Orrin Hatch of Utah and the committee Republicans suspended the rules by unanimous consent. With a statement that begged for the chyron "irony alert," Hatch justified the action as a response to the "unprecedented obstruction on the part of our colleagues."
politics  gov2.0  Dems  GOP 
february 2017 by rgl7194
The Download on the DNC Hack — Krebs on Security
Over the past few days, several longtime readers have asked why I haven’t written about two stories that have consumed the news media of late: The alleged Russian hacking attacks against the U.S. Democratic National Committee (DNC) and, more recently, the discovery of malware on a laptop at a Vermont power utility that has been attributed to Russian hacker groups.
I’ve avoided covering these stories mainly because I don’t have any original reporting to add to them, and because I generally avoid chasing the story of the day — preferring instead to focus on producing original journalism on cybercrime and computer security.
security  privacy  Dems  hack  russia  gov2.0  politics  election  krebs 
january 2017 by rgl7194
To Stop Trump, Democrats Can Learn From the Tea Party - The New York Times
Today is the first day of the 115th United States Congress. In less than three weeks, this Congress will join with President-elect Donald J. Trump to claim a mandate they do not have for policies that most Americans do not support. Together, they will seek to enact a bigoted and anti-democratic agenda, threatening our values and endangering us all.
But Americans have the power to resist this dangerous turn. We know because we’ve seen it before.
politics  nytimes  gov2.0  trump  Dems 
january 2017 by rgl7194
The DNC keeps the Watergate file cabinet next to server hacked by Russia | Ars Technica
Blow-by-blow account of hack that hit Democratic National Committee.
The basement of the Democratic National Committee's Washington, DC, headquarters holds one of the most fitting images to come out of the hacks that dogged Democrats in the 2016 presidential election. On the left: a 1960s-era file cabinet that was jimmied open during the 1972 Watergate break-in. On the right: a DNC server that was hacked by what the US intelligence community says were Russian operatives.
That image is from an 8,300-word New York Times article about how two separate Russian government groups hacked the DNC. The hacks first came to light in June, and the rough outline is well known. For months, the intruders had free reign over the DNC's computers. Over time, the Russians extended their reach into the Gmail accounts of Clinton campaign chairman John Podesta, former Secretary of State Colin Powell, and others. The series of DNC blunders, bordering on ineptitude, that allowed the attacks to succeed has been well documented. Those blunders are now coming into sharper focus.
russia  gov2.0  security  privacy  hack  election  politics  Dems 
december 2016 by rgl7194
Keith Ellison Wins Elections. He’s Looking to Win the DNC Next.
The DNC chairman candidate explains why his constituents keep choosing him
On the latest episode of Keepin’ It 1600, Jon Favreau, Tommy Vietor, and Jon Lovett spoke with Representative Keith Ellison. Currently representing the fifth district of Minnesota, Ellison is a candidate to become the next DNC chairman. He is black and Muslim. In the two weeks since he entered this race, many have questioned whether his race and religious background could hurt his candidacy. Ellison joined the podcast to address these questions directly and explain why he can steer the Democrats during Donald Trump’s presidency.
gov2.0  politics  Dems  podcast 
december 2016 by rgl7194
There Were No Purple* States On Tuesday | FiveThirtyEight
*At least, no states split their Senate-presidential vote for the first time ever.
In the run-up to Election Day, we wondered whether more voters than normal would split their tickets because of Donald Trump’s unique candidacy, perhaps voting for Republicans down-ballot but for Hillary Clinton in the presidential contest. Republican Senate candidates, unsure of how to deal with Trump, tried different approaches — endorsing him, disavowing him, refusing to say whom they’d vote for. In the end, it didn’t matter. Every state that elected a Republican candidate for Senate voted for Trump, and every state that elected a Democratic Senate candidate voted for Clinton.
The 2016 Senate elections were the most nationalized ever.
election  politics  trump  gov2.0  hillary  Dems  GOP  538 
november 2016 by rgl7194
Ticket splitting is dead. National parties are now everything. - Vox
Every single state that elected a Republican senator this November voted for Donald Trump — and every single state that elected a Democratic senator voted for Hillary Clinton.
That’s a first in American history — at least going back to 1913, when the Constitution began mandating the direct popular election of senators. And it’s a dramatic reversal from much of the middle of the 20th century, when voters frequently backed senators of one party while also supporting the opposing party’s presidential nominee — a phenomenon known as “ticket splitting.”
election  gov2.0  Dems  GOP  politics 
november 2016 by rgl7194
The Democratic Party establishment is finished after Trump.
What a joke.
The Democrats will now control next to nothing above the municipal level. Donald Trump will be president. We are going to be unpacking this night for the rest of our lives, and lives beyond that. We can’t comprehend even 1 percent of what’s just happened. But one aspect of it, minor in the overall sweep, that I’m pretty sure we can comprehend well enough right now: The Democratic Party establishment has beclowned itself and is finished.
I think of the lawmakers, the consultants, the operatives, and—yes—the center-left media, and how everything said over the past few years leading up to this night was bullshit.
election  gov2.0  politics  Dems 
november 2016 by rgl7194
As the old saying goes, “Republicans fall in line, Democrats fall in love”. – Medium
As the old saying goes, “Republicans fall in line, Democrats fall in love”. Conservatives retain power despite being in the minority because they’re smart enough to support their political platform, while too many progressives become obsessed with personality. Remember, there are 11.4 million undocumented human beings relying on you in November to get over it.
politics  gov2.0  election  Dems  GOP  quotes 
november 2016 by rgl7194
Goodreads | Quote by Mark Halperin: “It was Bill Clinton who once pithily captured t...”
“It was Bill Clinton who once pithily captured the contrast between the two parties when it came to selecting a presidential standard-bearer: "Democrats want to fall in love; Republicans just fall in line.”
politics  gov2.0  election  Dems  GOP  quotes 
november 2016 by rgl7194
Republicans Are Acting Like Democrats. Democrats Are Acting Like Republicans. | FiveThirtyEight
“You know the difference in Democrats and Republicans?” Bill Clinton said in a 2003 speech. “In every presidential election, Democrats want to fall in love. Republicans just fall in line.”
politics  gov2.0  election  Dems  GOP  quotes 
november 2016 by rgl7194
7 very tired political cliches - POLITICO
2. “Democrats fall in love, while Republicans fall in line” : 26 mentions
“The old cliché has it that when it comes to picking their candidates, Democrats fall in love while Republicans fall in line,” writes the Washington Post’s Karen Tumulty on Feb. 12. “But this year it would seem that Republican voters are doing neither.”
“The old saw is that Democrats fall in love with their candidates while Republicans fall in line behind theirs,” writes the Boston Globe’s Jeff Jacoby on Jan. 11.
“There’s the old line that Democrats fall in love and Republicans fall in line. And to what intensity is what we’re still kind of debating on,” said talk radio host Dana Loesch on CNN, Jan. 10.
“Republicans fall in line, not in love. Democrats fall in love, as we know,” said host Chris Matthews on MSNBC’s “Hardball,” Jan. 10.
politics  gov2.0  election  Dems  GOP  quotes 
november 2016 by rgl7194
16 people who shaped the 2016 election: Alexandra Chalupa [Video]
As a Democratic Party consultant and proud Ukrainian-American, Alexandra Chalupa was outraged last spring when Donald Trump named Paul Manafort as his campaign manager. Chalupa had been following Manafort’s career ever since he popped up in Kiev more than a decade ago as an adviser and campaign consultant to the pro-Russian political party in Ukraine. As she saw it, Manafort was a key figure in advancing Russian President Vladimir Putin’s agenda inside her ancestral homeland — and she was determined to expose it.
election  politics  gov2.0  Dems  ukrainian 
october 2016 by rgl7194
DNC staffers: FBI didn’t tell us for months about possible Russian hack | Ars Technica
FBI told DNC to "look for signs of unusual activity" on network in fall of 2015.
A report by Reuters suggests that the FBI was aware of a possibly Russian-sponsored intrusion into the network of the Democratic National Committee as early as last fall. But investigators from the FBI only initially told DNC staff that they should be on the lookout for strange activity on their network—and the feds didn't mention a potential state-sponsored attack until they informed the Clinton campaign in March about a phishing campaign.
gov2.0  security  privacy  Dems  hack  russia 
october 2016 by rgl7194
Trump, DNC, RNC Flunk Email Security Test — Krebs on Security
Donald J. Trump has repeatedly bashed Sen. Hillary Clinton for handling classified documents on her private email server, suggesting that anyone who is so lax with email security isn’t fit to become president. But a closer look at the Web sites for each candidate shows that in contrast to hillaryclinton.com, donaldjtrump.com has failed to take full advantage of a free and open email security technology designed to stymie email spoofing and phishing attacks.
At issue is a fairly technical proposed standard called DMARC. Short for “domain-based messaging authentication reporting and conformance,” DMARC tries to solve a problem that has plagued email since its inception: It’s surprisingly difficult for email providers and end users alike to tell whether a given email is real – i.e. that it really was sent by the person or organization identified in the “from:” portion of the missive.
trump  Dems  GOP  email  server  security  privacy 
july 2016 by rgl7194
DNC Breach extended to systems used by Clinton campaign | Ars Technica
Congressional campaign and DNC breach allegedly by same Russian group.
An analytical system hosted by the Democratic National Committee and used by Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign team was accessed by hackers. In a statement issued by the Clinton campaign, a spokesperson said that a network intrusion had exposed data on the system maintained by the DNC, but that the campaign organizations's own systems did not appear to have been breached. No financial or personal identifying data other than voter information was stored on the analytical system.
security  privacy  email  server  Dems  hack  russia 
july 2016 by rgl7194
Democratic Party’s congressional fundraising committee was also hacked | Ars Technica
DCCC's website redirected donors to a fake contribution page controlled by attackers.
Yet another cyber-attack has targeted a Democratic Party organization—or more specifically, the party's donors. Reuters reports that the FBI is investigating a breach of the systems of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee. While the details of the alleged intrusion were not revealed, visitors to the DCCC's site were apparently redirected to a malicious lookalike website mimicking the DCCC contribution page.
security  privacy  email  server  Dems  hack 
july 2016 by rgl7194
How DNC, Clinton campaign attacks fit into Russia’s cyber-war strategy | Ars Technica
Was it to cover for hack, or part of info-war on NATO? Putin won't tell.
The well-timed leak of e-mails from the Democratic National Committee, following a long-running breach of the DNC's network, is a masterful piece of information warfare. The leak may only be the beginning of an effort to shape the US presidential election, or it may be a backup plan triggered by the exposure of the long-running breach. But the hacking of the DNC and the direct targeting of Hillary Clinton are only parts of a much larger operation by Russia-based hackers who have breached a number of US government networks.
security  privacy  email  server  Dems  hack  russia 
july 2016 by rgl7194
Russian Hack of the DNC - Schneier on Security
Amazingly enough, the preponderance of the evidence points to Russia as the source of the DNC leak. I was going to summarize the evidence, but Thomas Rid did a great job here. Much of that is based on June's forensic analysis by Crowdstrike, which I wrote about here. More analysis here.
Jack Goldsmith discusses the political implications.
The FBI is investigating. It's not unreasonable to expect the NSA has some additional intelligence on this attack, similarly to what they had on the North Korea attack on Sony.
EDITED TO ADD (7/27): More on the FBI's investigation. Another summary of the evidence pointing to Russia.
security  privacy  email  server  Dems  hack  russia 
july 2016 by rgl7194
Were Russian Email Hackers Trying To Help Trump? | FiveThirtyEight
PHILADELPHIA — Robby Mook, Hillary Clinton’s campaign manager, said Sunday that Russian hackers broke into the Democratic Party’s email system in order to help Donald Trump by embarrassing the party. But there’s no hard proof of that theory, which is one of many that have arisen from a remarkable act of political espionage.
What we do know at this point is that there is a strong likelihood the hackers who penetrated the Democratic National Committee’s email system were Russian. Last month, security experts who studied the breach told several newspapers that it bore the hallmarks of Russian government hackers, based on the patterns of the intrusion and some of the data that the researchers discovered.
security  privacy  email  server  Dems  hack  russia 
july 2016 by rgl7194
New evidence suggests DNC hackers penetrated deeper than previously thought | Ars Technica
Consultant's Yahoo Mail suspected of being targeted by state-sponsored hackers.
The suspected hacking of a Democratic National Committee consultant's personal Yahoo Mail account provides new evidence that state-sponsored attackers penetrated deeper than previously thought into the private communications of the political machine attempting to defeat Republican nominee Donald Trump.
security  privacy  email  server  Dems  hack 
july 2016 by rgl7194
Democratic National Committee chief resigns after hacked e-mails show anti-Sanders tone | Ars Technica
Dumped e-mails lead to turmoil among Democrats. Is there a Russian connection?
Late Friday, WikiLeaks published 20,000 internal e-mails from the Democratic National Committee acquired in a hacking attack last month. The dumped messages, including some that had a derisive tone toward primary candidate Bernie Sanders, roiled the Democratic Party on the eve of its convention and led to the resignation yesterday of DNC chief Debbie Wasserman Schultz.
The DNC hack was discovered on June 14, and soon after, some evidence of a Russian connection was found. Now, the belief that the hack was sponsored by the Russian government on some level has been explicitly endorsed by Hillary Clinton's campaign. Yesterday on CNN's "State of the Union," Clinton's campaign manager, Robby Mook, said Russian hackers are explicitly trying to get Clinton's opponent, Donald Trump, elected in November.
security  privacy  email  server  Dems 
july 2016 by rgl7194
The Perils of Your Own Mail Servers — MacSparky
I was at a professional gathering recently when the subject of email security came up. I was surrounded by a group of lawyers that knew next-to-nothing about technology and it made me curious about their thoughts on email servers. Going around the room, I found that just about everyone was maintaining their own email servers because they felt it was “safer”. There is this bias when it comes to data that somehow privately owned servers are safer despite the fact they are connected to the same Internet populated with the same bad guys everybody else is facing.
security  privacy  email  server  Dems 
july 2016 by rgl7194
The DNC should never have been running its own email server.
The DNC should have outsourced its email to Google, Yahoo, or another major company.
One unlikely lesson of the 2016 presidential election turns out to be that you simply should not host your own email unless you really know what you’re doing. And odds are, if you’re running for office, or running a political party, you probably don’t.
email  server  hack  security  privacy  gov2.0  Dems 
july 2016 by rgl7194
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