I sympathize with Alan MacLeod's frustration that "To Media, No Democrat Can Possibly Be Right-Wing" -- after all, it wasn't that long ago that Georgia Democratic Sen. Richard Russell helped found the Conservative Coalition, and that the American Conservative Union ranked the late Georgia Democratic Rep. Larry McDonald behind only Ron Paul as the most conservative House Rep. But I will say it's nice to finally hear our media call folks like Nancy Pelosi "center-left" instead of pretend (as they did for almost two decades!) that no one in America could possibly be further left than she. This is yet another reason I'm glad Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Ayanna Pressley, Ilhan Omar, and Rashida Tlaib are in Congress -- and in America.
In a peripherally-related note, the incomparable Duncan Black, a.k.a. Atrios, answers the vexing question "Why Don't Democratic Senate Candidates in Purple States Support Popular Things" (like a higher minimum wage), and he answers it better than anyone else I've heard. Races in purple states, he says, "are generally going to be tough/close races, but the calculation is not 'boy if I support a higher minimum wage then the voters will get mad.' The calculation is 'boy if I support a higher minimum wage then the voters will like that, BUT the Chamber of Commerce types will dump a bunch of money into the race to oppose me and run ads calling me a child molester (or highlighting something else that might be unpopular about me).'" All of that is true, but it also demands a counterpunch from the candidate like "how about that -- I support a minimum wage hike and suddenly my opponents are lying about me! Don't let them take you hostage!"
Dino Grandoni at the Washington Post explains, with the help of a perhaps too-understated headline, how our "EPA's New 'No Surprises' Inspection Policy Has Some Critics Worried." You remember from school how all your surprise quizzes didn't really count if you didn't do well on them? You don't? Of course you don't! It boggles the mind how Republicans can claim to be the "party of personal responsibility" but also ensure that polluters won't have to put up with surprise inspections which is often the only way to catch polluters. Of course, for our President's votaries, "personal responsibility" is only for black people -- "belonging to the club" is what matters to them, and that's what no-surprise-inspections signifies to them. If Democrats had any courage, they'd run attack ads on this basis, and make the moral argument I've described, but you already know what the chances of that are.
In a peripherally-related note, our President opines that wind power "doesn't work" without taxpayer help. Given the price parity wind has achieved with fossil fuels in many parts of our nation, I rather suspect it would work without subsidies, but gauging whether wind power would work without subsidies now really isn't the point -- we're supposed to subsidize good technologies that need more research and more time to develop. Also, too, oil and gas get about the same amount of subsidies annually as wind power, so if our President "(doesn't) want to be subsidizing things that don't need to be subsidized," where's his enthusiasm for ending that slab of corporate welfare? And if he's so hot to stop handing out taxpayer money to energy sources that "don't work," where's his enthusiasm for ending handouts for nuclear power, which has lost money for a much longer period of time? (I notice he didn't tell other heads of state about the "piles and piles of dead birds" no one finds at the base of windmills. Clearly he saves those stories for us rubes.)
Defense contractor apparently leaves voice mail message threatening Rep. Frederica Wilson (D-FL) over her introduction of a bill that would force public schools to ensure all their students are properly-vaccinated. Read the transcript of this phone call in its entirety, and you'll marvel at the continued existence of folks who have clearly never contemplated the benefits of deep breathing. And remember, folks: "I’m gonna kill your ass if you do that bill, I swear" is a terroristic threat, and therefore not protected by our First Amendment! I hope Rep. Wilson responds to this threat by fighting harder for this bill.
Finally, the New York Times reminds us that "Using Race for Gain" is an "Old Tactic" for our President. Yes, his settlement of that 1970s investigation into his apparent refusal to rent to black folks and his emptiest-wagon trumpeting of the "guilt" of the Central Park Five leapt to mind even before I got to paragraph nine. If you accept that race-baiting is a pattern with our President, as I do, then of course you regard reports that he "didn't...fully underst(and) what he was doing when he unleashed last week's racist tweetstorm as utter bullshit. And worse, as drama.