Wednesday Night time Owls. ‘Day One Agenda—The subsequent administration: utilizing presidential energy for good’




I hold sensing an undercurrent of despair when speaking to liberal partisans concerning the election, a sigh that beating Trump isn’t sufficient however all that may be performed. Sure, Democrats are solely an even-money shot, at finest, to flip the Senate. And sure, even when they succeed, Mitch “Grim Reaper” McConnell can hinder the bulk with the filibuster, and it will not be as much as the subsequent president, however the fiftieth senator ideologically, somebody like Joe Manchin or Kyrsten Sinema, to agree to alter the Senate guidelines to get rid of the 60-vote threshold for laws. (There’s at all times funds reconciliation, however that restricted path goes by means of the identical conservaDems.)

However this actuality doesn’t should encourage progressive anguish. Anybody telling you {that a} Democratic victory subsequent November would merely sign 4 years of limitless gridlock hasn’t thought concerning the potentialities specified by this subject. And in case you doubt the chance for robust govt motion, let me direct your consideration to Donald Trump.

MAKE NO MISTAKE: Trump is an autocrat, greater than keen to interrupt the legislation to understand his marketing campaign guarantees. His invocation of inherent, excessive govt energy, egged on mainly by Legal professional Basic William Barr, is in actual fact harmful, as former Consultant Brad Miller lays out for us later on this subject. Trump has asserted the proper to disregard Congress’s oversight operate, reinterpret legal guidelines based mostly on his personal preferences, disguise info from lawmakers and the general public, promise pardons earlier than unlawful actions happen, appoint appearing heads of federal companies with out recommendation and consent from the Senate, and lift the specter of emergency to comply with by means of on his marketing campaign guarantees.

However in a big variety of circumstances, Trump’s pathway has sprung from a easy proposition: When Congress provides the manager department authority, the president, you realize, can really use it.[…]


  • Wide Awake, by Rebecca TraisterThe previous 4 years have birthed a progressive motion so extraordinary it simply may survive the forces that threaten its extinction.
  • The Right-Wing Violence Trump Has Encouraged Has Deep Roots in American History, By Dolores Janiewski and Chad PearsonThe far-right violence that Donald Trump has stoked has deep roots in US historical past. Kicking him from workplace gained’t change that — however it will deal a blow to right-wing vigilantism. 
  • The South Has Already Changed, by Adam HarrisJaime Harrison misplaced to Lindsey Graham however expanded Democrats’ imaginative and prescient of what’s doable within the Deep South.



“In a democracy, somebody who fails to get elected to workplace can at all times console himself with the thought that there was one thing not fairly truthful about it.”
          ~~Thucydides, Historical past of the Peloponnesian Struggle (411 BCE)




At Day by day Kos on this date in 2018—What does Secretary of State Pompeo imply by ‘restore democracy’ in Iran?

In 2014 when he was only a Kansas congressman, Mike Pompeo, now secretary of state and one of the pugnacious ideologues of the neoconservative membership, bragged that it will take solely  “2000 [bombing] sorties to destroy the Iranian nuclear capability.” Final month, he wrote in International Affairs his view of how the reimposition of sanctions are supposed to convey Iran to its knees and do Washington’s bidding, or be toppled by a populace disgruntled by a smashed financial system. Colin H. Kahl, co-director of the Middle for Worldwide Safety and Cooperation, and a former nationwide safety and protection official within the Obama administration, dismantled what he calls Pompeo’s “harmful delusion” in a subsequent essay in International Affairs.

David E. Sanger at The New York Occasions reports:

“We wish to restore democracy there,” Secretary of State Mike Pompeo stated final week, strolling simply to the sting of declaring that regime change is the objective. “We predict the Iranian folks need that very same factor.”

Actually, a really democratic, socially liberal, non-aggressive Iranian authorities that places a excessive worth on human rights could be a welcome change from the brutal one now in cost. Whereas Iran has among the trappings of democracy, it’s a profoundly constrained one riven by corruption that favors the clerical elite, holds giant numbers of political prisoners, engages in torture and different brutality, and has a protracted file of human rights abuses, one of many targets being homosexual folks. It was apparent from the election protests in 2009 that many Iranians wish to see a special form of authorities. For every one of many 1000’s of protesters who dared confront Iran’s pernicious non secular zealots on the street, for each Neda Agha-Soltan murdered by authorities henchmen, there little question had been dozens silently cheering them on from residence however fearful to affix the opposition. They deserve higher.

As do the Saudis. But neither Pompeo nor Trump are making any noises about sanctioning the royal autocracy of that kingdom. It doesn’t take any creativeness to determine why.