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There were a number of fact check failures for Trump, most notably that he was wrong on ISIS controlling oil in Libya, he was wrong on blaming Obama for the way we left Iraq, and he was especially wrong about Clinton and her campaign starting birtherism.

From fact checking:


TRUMP STATEMENT: ISIS has “oil all over the place, including the oil, a lot of the oil, in Libya.”
FACT CHECK: According to a Bloomberg analysis, Libyan oil fields and pipelines are controlled by a combination of the Government of National Accord, allies of the Tripoli Petroleum Facilities Guard, and the Libyan National Army (and groups aligned with them).
Claudia Gazzini, a Tripoli-based senior analyst at the International Crisis Group, told the Washington Post that it was simply not true that the Islamic State has control of any Libyan oil.
“While it is true that ISIS has attacked oil fields in the Sirte basin area and destroyed key equipment there, they have not sought to keep control of the oil fields,” Gazzini said.


Patti Solis Doyle, Clinton’s 2008 campaign manager, told Wolf Blitzer a volunteer forwarded an email promoting “birtherism” and that that person was fired. “The campaign nor Hillary did not start the ‘birther’ movement, period, end of story,” Solis Doyle told CNN, saying the volunteer’s actions were “beyond the pale” and that Clinton called Obama campaign manager David Plouffe to apologize.

Blumenthal, a longtime Clinton confidante but not a current campaign staffer, denies ever contacting McClatchy; the former McClatchy bureau chief, James Asher, recently said he clearly recalled the conversation with Blumenthal.

What CBS either omitted or did not know is that James Asher no longer is making the claim of recalling the Blumenthal conversation, and that the investigatory mission to Kenya by McClatchy news was the result of multiple stories being published at the time.


Trump fat out LIED when he claimed he only filed for bankruptcy four times — which is a LOT of bankruptcies. Four bankruptcies argues being very bad at business. It was not four it was six bankruptcies.  Perhaps Trump is engaging in “Republican Math” which doesn’t regard numbers as quantifiers, but rather subverts them as ideology without numeric meaning.


Again per CBS and politifact (because it is important to multisource):


FACT CHECK: Clinton is correct. When Politifact looked into this issue, they found six times that Trump has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection: The Trump Taj Mahal in 1991; Trump Castle in 1992; Trump Plaza and Casino in 1992; the Plaza Hotel in 1992; Trump Hotels and Casinos Resorts in 2004; and Trump Entertainment Resorts in 2009.

I think my greatest outrage is that Trump believes he is in some way more presidential APPEARING than Clinton. Ms. Clinton was elegantly groomed and very presentable. Trump in contrast, has demanded that his appearance NOT be an issue, while he has repeatedly demeaned his women opponents from Carly Fiorina to Clinton, and has demeaned women more broadly, including those in his employ. Women are not qualified or unqualified from office on the basis of appearance. But if we were going to assess ability on the basis of appearance, Trump is a fat, jowly, puffy-eyed, badly spray-tanned smirking swine with an unattractive piece of roadkill on his head, like a tacky version of a Daniel Boone hat. He is in no position to criticize anyone’s appearance, other than he clearly believes this view of women as sexual objects and male accessories, sometimes called the demeaning term eye candy, is the exclusive prerogative of men.


The hypocrisy in this, the obscene double standard, is that Trump behaved badly, interrupting Clinton repeatedly – in the first 26 minutes of the debate, Trump interrupted Hillary 25 times, per Vox.


Huff Po referred to this an manterupting:


Manterrupting, defined by journalist and author Feminist Fight Club Jessica Bennett as “unnecessary interruption of a woman by a man,” is a phenomenon that many professional women are (unfortunately) familiar with.
A 2014 study found that women are significantly more likely to be interrupted than men are, and research has shown that when women do speak up, their words are given less weight and treated as less valid than men’s. This phenomenon is especially problematic in fields ― like politics ― which are dominated by men’s voices just by virtue of the numbers.
Women who want to circumvent these professional obstacles have to learn to play the game, and part of that game means dealing with the frustrating habits of one’s male colleagues ― or in the case of a presidential race, one’s political opponents. As Clinton well knows, in order to avoid having her words dismissed, she has to modulate the way she presents her ideas in a way that male candidates simply don’t.
To Clinton’s credit, she appeared unperturbed by Trump’s attempts to verbally bulldoze over her. Each and every time, she kept speaking, often with a sly smile. Because as any professional woman knows, the best way to shut down a manterrupter is to simply refuse to acknowledge him.

Although to be fair, Trump also talked over the moderator, and Hillary Clinton in the second half of the debate did interrupt Trump a few times as well, 17 times in total to Trump interrupting her 51 times. I hope this was not a drinking game exercise for the good folks over at Vox.


Counting the interruptions of both candidates by moderator Lester Holt, Clinton was interrupted a total of 70 times, and Trump was interrupted 47 times.
Some of Trump’s interruptions of Clinton featured outright lies, like insisting that he never said climate change was a Chinese conspiracy, or denying that he ever said some of the offensive things about women that Clinton called him out on saying.
Some of his interruptions were petulant asides; at one point he even threw in a one-word, schoolboy-like “Not.”

Other interruptions turned into loud, insistent filibusters, with Trump barreling over Clinton until she finally smiled and relented to let him keep talking — or until Holt interjected to insist that Trump give Clinton her allotted two minutes to talk.

If anything renders someone “unpresidential” it would be this Trump failure to control his mouth and his toxic attitudes of special privilege or entitlement towards others.


Trump and Trump voters in a nutshell

by Dan Burns on September 26, 2016 · 0 comments

I saw this here, which is one of the places that Tom Tomorrow’s genius is featured on a weekly basis.

My posting this is not actually meant as a blanket condemnation of Trump voters, most of whom are not fundamentally really malicious people (unlike their candidate), but rather are socio-politically ignorant and confused and gullible and don’t know any better. They were raised that way, and never given the intellectual tools to help get beyond that. Which is sad, but that’s the reality we have to deal with.


MN lege : DFL pickup opportunities up north

by Dan Burns on September 26, 2016 · 0 comments

bwcaThese districts go R+1, 2, and 4, respectively.
In 2A, Rep. David Hancock (R-Bemidji) is leaving. Our candidate for the open seat is Jerry Loud.

“I believe I have an ability to build working relationships and establishing confidence within a team or individual colleagues,” says Loud. Loud worked in corporate America for a decade with Novartis Pharmaceuticals, and has ten years working for the Red Lake Band of Chippewa in various positions. He currently is the Executive Director of the TANF (Temporary Assistance for Needy Families) program where he has established strong working relationships with Key Opinion Leaders (KOLs), which has helped him understand how large organizations operate and maintain a productive environment. In addition he spearheaded the Red Lake Green Step Nation.
(Red Lake Nation News)

The GOP candidate is Matthew Grossell, and, well, check out his website for yourself, complete with a quote from the Book of Isaiah on the home page.
Mike Moore is our candidate in 1B.


Black Families Matter

by Mike Tikkanen on September 25, 2016 · 0 comments

Under assault from child protection services is the word on the street.


Racial disparity data supports the charge and people in the system on both sides see it every day. My city, Minneapolis most likely leads the nation in overall racial disparity;

– arresting Black adult men (44% of Minneapolis population of adult black men in 2001),
– median incomes of Black families are about half of the white population,
– about 62% of Black students attend high-poverty schools,
– MN has the nation’s largest income gap between whites and people of color (22%),
– The underperforming of high poverty schools appears now to be written in stone.
These painful truths evolved out of decades of leaving poor families to struggle with basic needs and sometimes less than no help with issues of trauma and violence (jail is not help).


Drug use, violence and years of child abuse repeat the terrible behaviors from traumatic scars generation after generation.


Preteen moms are now raising their own families without parenting skills just like their mother did with them and the violent boyfriend with a dangerous drug habit.


Developing coping skills and achieving an education under these circumstances becomes a challenge for everyone involved.


There’s a delicate balance that must be found that protects children and poor troubled families.


Child Protection must work to strike that delicate balance of protecting vulnerable children with mentoring programs for young moms, trauma based mental health services, crisis nurseries and quality daycare.
As a volunteer CASA guardian ad litem I know that once the cycle of abuse and poor parenting are broken, children go on to develop the coping skills they need to make it in school and in life and the terrible cycle of abuse and lifelong state ward status is broken.


Breaking this cycle of abuse delivers the rest of us successful schools, safe streets and taxpaying citizens leading happy lives.  We should all want this.
What we do to our children they will do to our society (Pliny the Elder, 2000 years ago).


West suburban DFL candidates looking good

by JeffStrate on September 23, 2016 · 0 comments

Pundits and political operatives are looking closely at several west suburban state legislative races that could be extremely close.   The current edtions of Democratic Visions are featuring DFL endorsed candidates running in Senate Districts 36, 44 and 49 and House District 48A.

Four suburban DFL Candidates

Deb Calvert, Laurie Pryor, Melissa Franzen and John Hoffman

Laurie Pryor may be a freshman candidate in her bid to replace retiring State Represenattive Yvonne Selcer, but she knows most every school, business center and residential cul-de-sac in District 48A (northern Eden Prairie and Southern Minnetonka) from a decade of organizing for local and congressional DFL candidates.   Deb Calvert, another issues informed and politically savy candidate, is running to replace Senator Terri Bonoff in Senate District 44 (northern Minnetonka, southern Plymouth and Woodland). Bonoff, as we know, is running a competitive race with right wing enigma Eric Paulsen in the Third Congressional District.     Senator Melisa Franzen is seeking a second term in Senate District 49 (Edina, west Bloomington and a few eastern precincts of Minnetonka and Eden Prairie.   These DFLers do not have strong Republican opponents but huge amounts of money are being spent on legislative races that can be won or lost by fewer than 40 votes.   Calvert, Pryor and Franzen are interviewed by Ted O’Brien in Democratic Visions September Program One here.


Senator John Hoffman is being challenged by Republican Brooklyn Park Mayor John Lunde in Senate District 36. But the personable and effective Hoffman has helped deliver funding for schools, highways and parks in the north suburban district and is strong on environment and jobs.   His district includes all of Champlin, and parts of Coon Rapids and Brooklyn Park.
Hoffman appears in the first segment of Democratic Visons’s second September program which also includes humorist Jon Spayde’s Professor of Negativity, author-comedian Lorna Landvick and a pro-Hillary, Junk Yard Democrats music video that splashes DFLers with home grown whimsy. Oh yes, Mike Gelfand splashes vinegar on distracted drivers and his romantic relationships.   Click here for program two.


mn_capitolThis is about some pickup opportunities in SE Minnesota. Rich Wright is running in SD26.

I am running for the State Senate to invest in education, promote economic growth and opportunities for all, and to ensure all of us have access to affordable high quality healthcare.
These are ambitious goals with complex solutions that require effort and cooperation from all of our leaders.

The current occupant, Sen. Carla Nelson (R-Rochester) has a mixed record, and is even a member of something called the “Purple Caucus.” I gotta say that though the idea of that is not without merit, any practical impact wasn’t very prominent during these past two sessions. At R+1 this district is begging to be flipped.
Bev Cashman is running in HD 24A.


Back-tracking the Birther facts

by Dog Gone on September 22, 2016 · 0 comments

Much ado about nothing has been made of the Clinton staffer who was fired for circulating an email questioning Obama’s birthplace, and for a suggestion made by a Clinton campaign advisor.


No one however has ever claimed that the staffer WROTE that email.  Here is a copy of that email, via Snopes, and their observations about the email origins and circulation.


“Barack Obama’s mother was living in Kenya with his
Arab-African father late in her pregnancy. She was not allowed to travel
by plane then, so Barack Obama was born there and his mother then took
him to Hawaii to register his birth,” asserted one chain email that
surfaced on the urban legend site in April 2008.

That Hillary Clinton supporters circulated such an e-mail isn’t in
question, but the claim that that’s the moment the birther theory “first
emerged” simply isn’t true. The likeliest point of origin we’ve been
able to find was a post on conservative message board dated 1 March 2008 (which, according to a report in The Telegraph, was at least a month before Clinton supporters got on the e-mail bandwagon):

I was told today that Obama swore in on a Koran for his Senate seat. I do not believe he did. Can someone clarify this for me? I am under the impression only a Congressman has so far sworn in on a Koran.
Also that Obama’s mother gave birth to him overseas and then immediately flew into Hawaii and registered his birth as having taken place in Hawaii.
Again, any clarifications on this? Defintely disqualifies him for Prez. There must be some trace of an airticket. While small babies are not charged air fare they do have a ticket issued for them.
Long time ago but there may be some residual information somewhere.
Good ammo (if available and true) BEST USED AFTER he becomes PREZ (if that occurs) and it’s too late for Dems – except accept the VP.

Only the right persisted in perpetuating the theory beyond 2008, notably Trump, well after the totally unnecessary release of the president’s birth certificate – something done, imho, to humiliate the president as different (and therefore inferior in the minds of conservatives) to prior presidents, (like Chester Arthur rumored to have been born in Canada, with a foreign father). Not only is there some question as to the location of Chester Arthur’s birth, but also a question of what year he was born. 


As with President Obama, the issue of school records were involved as well in the conspiracy theory. Chester Arthur’s birther, by the way, really WAS a Democrat, a lawyer by the name of A. P. Hinman.


Politico did a great job tracking down who really DID originate birtherism in a recent article in 2008:


“As we reported, some of her supporters flirted with the idea in 2008— but it has its origins in the fever swamps beginning in Illinois in 2004,” he said.
In fact, birtherism, as it’s been called, reportedly began with innuendo by serial Illinois political candidate Andy Martin, who painted Obama as a closet Muslim in 2004. That spiraled into a concerted effort
by conspiracy theorists to raise doubts about Obama’s birthplace and religion — and essentially paint him as un-American.
Martin, who briefly launched a little-noticed presidential campaign last year, has disavowed the movement he’s often credited with starting, though he still foments similarly discredited doubts about Obama’s religion.
…On Friday, Clinton’s former senior aide Patti Solis Doyle acknowledged that a volunteer coordinator in Iowa forwarded a birther-related email. “Hillary made the decision immediately let that person go,” she said.
“We let that person go. It was so beyond the pale of the campaign Hillary wanted to run and that we as a staff wanted to run that I called David Plouffe who was managing Barack Obama to apologize to say this is
not coming from us, that this was rogue volunteer.”

And here is Mr. Martin, courtesy of internet video from 2008 — see how easy it is for Trump and the GOP to fact check? That they don’t is a choice for willful ignorance and intentional deception and promoting lies:


The New York Times, back in 2008, did a great job digging into this, elaborating on those in the right, from the ‘Freeepers” aka the Free Republic crackpots and extremist conspiracy theorists, and via Fox Not-News, to rabidly Anti-Semite Andy Martin, to equally radical righties who are pro-Israel Jews.  Politics truly makes strange bedfellows.



Some unexpected results in the Minnesota Poll

by Woden on September 22, 2016 · 0 comments

There were some unexpected results in the Star Tribune’s Minnesota Poll, though to admit the click-baity nature of the headline, most results were what was expected, at least by me, but they’re interesting nonetheless. But since the headline says “unexpected”, let’s start with something unexpected.
There seems to be good news for the DFL in the cross-tabs that show self-identified Democrats are finding no appeal in third party candidates. Gary Johnson is getting zero, Jill Stein is getting 2%, and 9% are still trying to decide. At the same time and seemingly in contradiction, younger voters, defined in the poll as 18-34, are the most favorable to third parties, giving Johnson 10%. Yet younger voters are part of the Democratic coalition, leaning something like 60% Democratic. 2% are for Stein and a full 13% are undecided. How does that work? It makes sense if we distinguish between self-identification and voting behavior. Younger voters are the age group most likely to vote Democratic, but least likely to self-identify with a party. The bad news is they’re the group least likely to remember what happened when Democratic-leaners voted third party in swing states in 2000. In Minnesota that didn’t matter, but not in only in Florida, but in other close states too, those who voted for Ralph Nader had the means to easily prevent the Bush Jr. administration and everything that went horribly wrong as a consequence. How many young voters remember that? The good news at least is that when younger voters decide, or decide they can’t stick with a third-party candidate in a close election, they’re likely to vote for Hillary, even if with pinched noses. Of course, with the consequences of a Trump presidency being so horrible, best to talk to third party supporters and not make assumptions. Really, Johnson supporters, do you have any idea of what Libertarians are about? Please look into that before not merely throwing away your vote, but shredding it, stomping on it, and burying it deep in the compost heap.
Fully expected is that Trump is doing terribly in the metro area, defined in the poll as Ramsey and Hennepin counties, but leading by a few in the outer suburbs, defined as the suburbs outside Ramsey and Hennepin counties, and by a bit more outside the metro area. The definitions can be dickered with, as the western stretches of Hennepin sure seem like outer suburb, and first tier suburbs are counted as “outer” because of which county they’re in, but broadly the definitions are useful. This is trend we’ve seen in Minnesota in recent elections, and we were actually behind the times compared to most states in that central cities are deep blue, inner suburbs are nearly as blue, outer suburbs are deep red, rural areas are just as red except maybe for some off blue spots, and there’s a band of purple through the second or third tier suburbs. The areas of Trump’s strength fits that pattern. Sadly, that pattern suggests a cultural divide we’ve seen in other polls, and recent elections, not to mention some non-political measures. It’s a nationwide trend, and there was no reason to think Minnesota would remain exceptional indefinitely. The rural/metro divide is something Republicans have tried to exploit for momentary political advantage, but they didn’t create it. Pretty much pick a state, and it’s there.


I UnVoted ~ Social Media Graphic #6

by Invenium Viam on September 21, 2016 · 0 comments

Please feel free to share in your social media.




millspartying2If you’re old enough, like me, perhaps you remember when the late Rod Grams was a Republican, one-term U.S. Senator from Minnesota. During his time in the Senate Grams attained a certain notoriety for being unprepared for committee meetings and just general cluelessness. When things were looking ugly in his reelection bid in 2000 (his DFL opponent was senator-to-be Mark Dayton, now Minnesota governor), he called on Mom. Dig:

Stewart Mills III currently has an ad featuring his wife. The idea seems to be to project an ultra-wholesome image in order to try to counteract the recent exposure of a pretty damn repugnant social media history. This is not about picking on his family. Just noting that from an electoral perspective the precedent here is not promising.

Grams had one term as a U.S. Representative before becoming a Senator. Prior to that he was a TV news anchor. In other words, he was exactly as qualified, based on experience and knowledge (no paying dues in the state lege, etc.) for a spot in the U.S. Congress at that time as Mills is now.
Don’t freak out if you see polling showing Stewart III ahead. There’s precedent for that not being any too reliable, either.
Update: Here’s video from The Uptake, of what might well be the only Nolan/Mills debate. No major fireworks or blunders, that I’ve seen or heard about.