Politics Thread


#1569

Thanks for the info. Appears we really are underinformed here. Are there any reasonably reliable media platforms where I could get the missing bits of the picture I’m stuck with?


About the wall thing - isn’t it fun though? Think about it - there is no chance it will ever be completed or even remotely effective in it’s advertised purpose. If it gets (partly) built it will just be a completely useless big-ass wall. If I were an american I would like to see it (partly) built just for the heck of it. Entering the unique club of big-ass wall owners next to UK and China. Tourism would go up. People would visit to contemplate how greatly western big-ass wall building technique has progressed since Hadrian, fifteen centuries ago.


#1570

Agreed.

Semantics. It goes into the general fund which the executive branch can spend any way it wants, including on a wall. Money is fungible. How do you imagine President Obama funded DACA without any legislative appropriations for it and while claiming it hadn’t reduced funding for any of DHS’s existing activities? In this case the President can simply order the OMB to make the appropriate amount available to DHS.

I’m not convinced that Homeland Security needs legislative authorization for construction that enables it to accomplish an operational task that it is already authorized to accomplish, ie. border protection, any more than it needed legislative authorization for DACA which struck me as a bigger stretch of its legislatively authorized powers.


#1571

Maybe your Congress should think about setting stricter limits and providing more oversight then, eh?


#1572

While you can never be sure what end-runs may be found around normal budgetary procedure these days, in theory at least the government needs congressional appropriation to spend out of the general gift fund:

"…general donations to the feds are directed to a “Gifts to the United States” fund, set aside for ‘general use’ by the federal government or ‘budget needs.’

“Specific federal agencies can’t touch this funding without a congressional appropriation”


#1573

DHS is authorized to accept gifts. This goes back to 2008, the final year of W’s administration.

https://www.dhs.gov/sites/default/files/publications/mgmt_directive_112_02_gifts_to_the_department_of_homeland_security.pdf


#1574

This is the policy being cited by every news article suggesting that DHS couldn’t accept the Gofundme money without Congressional authorization.

On a quick skim, though, I can’t see where that comes from. :slight_smile: The “may not accept currency” isn’t it. I imagine the Gofundme money would come by check.


#1575

The incoming Democrat Congress will probably rescind that one, so, again if they want it they’d better use the current lame duck session or make use of that thing you linked before it is overridden.

I suppose they could purchase concrete and steel with the money and gift that instead, mayb? :thinking:


#1576

As per V. H. DHS can’t accept currency, but it explicitly can accept a check or money order.

Yep. Agreed.

To take away authorization that has been congressionally granted in either the 2004 DHS appropriation bill or in Title 6 of the US Code they’d need to control supermajorities in both the House and the Senate to override an inevitable Trump veto. They don’t even have a majority in the Senate


#1577

I used to be very skeptical about the Russia collusion charges, but when I read and hear stuff like this I have to wonder if the Russians do have something on him. He’s basically parroting Putin’s propaganda here much to the dismay of the entirety of the US’s intelligence, military and foreign policy establishments. It may not be proof of collusion in and of itself, but if it isn’t, then to quote former Secretary of State Tillerson, the President is a “moron”.


#1578

I believe he is both a moron and a Russian puppet. His Presidency wholly consists of him trying to rapidly bullshit his way through a book report on a book that he never read nor does he have the critical thinking skills to give an answer beyond a simplistic Kindergarten level response.


#1579

Yeah, I’m fairly dead certain of the moron part these days too, so no argument there. I’m not yet entirely convinced on the latter, but I’m increasingly struggling to come up with an alternate explanation for Trump’s obvious pandering to a murderous dictator who actively works to undermine the US every chance he gets as he attempts to re-establish his own empire at the cost of human lives. So yeah, it may well be both.


#1580

Agreed.

Unfortunately for the US you cannot just get rid of Trump with a fairly simple motion of no confidence (or a party leadership contest). Even more unfortunately the next in line is still going to be Pence…:fearful:


#1581

What if the wall only build halfway and Trump lose the next election ? Then they have to waste money to demolish the wall again or leave it like that half build ? :-):thinking:


#1582

Building the wall would be the equivalent of setting fire to a small mountain of cash. Demolishing it would just mean adding a bigger price tag to what is an already hideously expensive boondoggle.

The whole thing would be left to rot anyway just as soon as America gets an administration that decides it isn’t interested in paying millions every year to maintain Trump’s pet project.


#1583

Trump doing that, if he does, is enough for impeachment…Which is terrifying.

If Trump is Moronic Darth Vader :tm: , Pence is Emperor Palpatine. He is a Very, Very Bad Man :tm:

he literally has said that he wants to use electroshock therapy on The LGBTQ community


#1584

Cheer up you could probably recoup the wall costs in about 50 years if you make it into a tourist attraction: The Great Wall of 'Murica. A modern world wonder, so Yuuuuuuuuuuge! it’s even visible from space. That way you can really compete with China. :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:

I’m not so sure, seems the US is actually under multiple “states of emergency” that were never ended and thus continue on to this day. Together they constitute a big pile of that governmental “gunk” @TSSL sometimes likes to refer to and have seemingly been a key foundation of the current “imperial” presidency. Which is bad because the current occupant and his next-in-line are, well…

The US Congress has seemingly been almost criminally negligent in providing oversight, regulating and where warranted ending these ongoing “states of emergency”.

I know, which is why I do not share @Havenstone 's relatively rose-tinted outlook on the possible Pence presidency and administration. :fearful:


#1585

I’ve lived in the DC area for 20 years (I do not currently; please do not doxx me, lurkers), give or take. My senior class trip was to watch Congress (not that we were able to, as Obama was unveiling the MLK statue that day). I have gone into rooms that most people wouldn’t (fun fact, if you ever visit: if a door in a government building, within the Capitol, is unlocked and not labeled “Do Not Enter”, you are 100% allowed to enter. Source: I am close friends with a LOT of staffers and govvies).

I will tell you this: I have never seen so many protests, so much violence (outside of the North Side after dark. Baltimore does not do a place any good, sorry not sorry), so much vitriol…ever. I have sat in on Congress multiple times and never seen so much stagnation.

I am genuinely concerned for this country’s future, because it is getting worse and worse. Both sides of the aisle are guilty of this. My very liberal uncle hasn’t spoken to me since Clinton lost the election, because I voted 3rd party (despite the fact that my state was one of the first - if not the first - that went blue). I see the Republican side of my family growing either more extremist or more apathetic, whilst my Democratic family members are growing more hateful and controlling.

I am seeing members of my family, who were always relatively civil and centrist, becoming more and more polarized. Divide and conquer, indeed. Good job, Trump & media. :sigh:

(ETA: Baltimore doesn’t actually border DC, but a lot of the, um, negative aspects of Baltimore’s subculture have a ripple effect that is very much felt on the North & East Sides, particularly around NoMA. Stay away from NoMA after dark, y’all)


#1586

We could staff it with undocumented immigrants for maximum irony! :smiley:


#1587

So May has lost the meaningful vote by over 200 and will hold a no confidence vote on Wednesday. Considering I believe she’ll likely win on Wednesday, and she’s sticking to her deal I see this going really, really badly. Sorry I can’t post a source, my computer is a bit slow on certain sites, read the story on my phone, but it was from the independent, so googling the independent meaningful vote should hopefully find the story, as this has broke in the last half hour, so not sure how plentiful other sources will be yet.


#1588

https://www.uscourts.gov/about-federal-courts/educational-resources/about-educational-outreach/activity-resources/what-does

Quoted January 15, 2019, from the above:


What Does Free Speech Mean?

Among other cherished values, the First Amendment protects freedom of speech. The U.S. Supreme Court often has struggled to determine what exactly constitutes protected speech. The following are examples of speech, both direct (words) and symbolic (actions), that the Court has decided are either entitled to First Amendment protections, or not.

The First Amendment states, in relevant part, that:
“Congress shall make no law…abridging freedom of speech.”

Freedom of speech includes the right:

  • Not to speak (specifically, the right not to salute the flag).
    West Virginia Board of Education v. Barnette , 319 U.S. 624 (1943).

  • Of students to wear black armbands to school to protest a war (“Students do not shed their constitutional rights at the schoolhouse gate.”).
    Tinker v. Des Moines , 393 U.S. 503 (1969).

  • To use certain offensive words and phrases to convey political messages.
    Cohen v. California , 403 U.S. 15 (1971).

  • To contribute money (under certain circumstances) to political campaigns.
    Buckley v. Valeo , 424 U.S. 1 (1976).

  • To advertise commercial products and professional services (with some restrictions).
    Virginia Board of Pharmacy v. Virginia Consumer Council , 425 U.S. 748 (1976); Bates v. State Bar of Arizona , 433 U.S. 350 (1977).

  • To engage in symbolic speech, (e.g., burning the flag in protest).
    Texas v. Johnson , 491 U.S. 397 (1989); United States v. Eichman , 496 U.S. 310 (1990).

Freedom of speech does not include the right:

  • To incite actions that would harm others (e.g., “[S]hout[ing] ‘fire’ in a crowded theater.”).
    Schenck v. United States, 249 U.S. 47 (1919).

  • To make or distribute obscene materials.
    Roth v. United States , 354 U.S. 476 (1957).

  • To burn draft cards as an anti-war protest.
    United States v. O’Brien , 391 U.S. 367 (1968).

  • To permit students to print articles in a school newspaper over the objections of the school administration.
    Hazelwood School District v. Kuhlmeier , 484 U.S. 260 (1988).

  • Of students to make an obscene speech at a school-sponsored event.
    Bethel School District #43 v. Fraser , 478 U.S. 675 (1986).

  • Of students to advocate illegal drug use at a school-sponsored event.
    Morse v. Frederick, __ U.S. __ (2007).