If You Want to Decrease Abortions, Support Planned Parenthood.

Seriously, it isn’t not as insane as it sounds. Also, if you’re pro-life, you should be very happy to support Planned Parenthood. Why? Well the simple answer is that it decreases abortions and makes people safer.

March for Life began trending on my Facebook feed, and it made mention of the possibility of the White House staff attending. I couldn’t help but think of how ironic this was, that only a few days ago, a massive Women’s March just happened. How ironic that one of the largest protests in history, that took place in dozens of countries and every single continent, occurred only a few days ago, and the White House promptly reinstated a stronger Global Gag Order.

I was also reminded that access to the types of services Planned Parenthood helps in decreasing the very thing the pro-life movement wishes to outlaw. That’s because Planned Parenthood focuses on the prevention of unwanted pregnancies, and providing essential healthcare to women and men. The vast majority of services are to provide cancer screenings and pap tests, STD tests, and affordable contraception. Very little of what Planned Parenthood does, about 10%, is related to abortion.

You can argue that simply because Planned Parenthood provides abortions that it can’t reduce the numbers, but it does. One reason being, that if it weren’t done safely in clinics, it would be done illegally. Secondly, and the main reason, is that mostly clinics also provide family planning and contraception. IUDs dramatically reduce unwanted pregnancies because of the effectiveness. Higher use of contraception is also obviously linked to lower pregnancy.

Countries with the lowest access to contraception have severe problems with unwanted pregnancies as well as unsafe abortions because in these areas they are largely illegal. In Uganda alone 300,000 abortions take place each year, (this is about half the amount of abortions of the USA, while Uganda has a population of only 30 million, a 1/10 of the US population.) even though the practice is illegal except for when the mother’s life is in direct danger. Additionally, half of all women will need to be treated due to complications related to abortions at some point in their lives. This is what happens when contraception is less available and abortions are no longer safe.

So, you can argue abortions are immoral, wrong, it’s a legitimate argument, but don’t suggest defunding and restricting services that actually reduce the thing you want to see reduced. Also don’t argue to be pro life when you put lives at risk by defunding Planned Parenthood. If you care about lowering abortion, talk about how you can actually reduce unwanted pregnancies through comprehensive sexual education, making contraception more affordable and accessible, and focus on the cause of the problems, rather than the symptoms.

Trump is Busy

I wasn’t going to do much more writing on politics, because it turns people off, and instead focus on other things, but you know what, screw it. I think it’s fun and I like to be angry about things sometimes, so I’m going to write about politics. That being said, I hope to write about other topics that are important to me, as time allows, and that often involves politics on some level. Now, on to the insanity.

Trump is about to take office, and he has no idea what he is doing, his transition team does not know what they are doing, and nobody was vetted by the Trump team. Not only that, many Trump has chosen are either vastly under-qualified, abhorrently ignorant of their position’s tasks, or have conflict of interest issues.

Several of Trump’s picks often change, or are forced to withdrawal because of scandals popping up in the middle of the process. Monica Crowley for example was forced to relinquish her post. The person poised to take over the National Security Council has changed THREE times since Election Day. The most recent appointee, General Kellogg, didn’t start meeting with the current administration until this month, a few weeks before Trump’s inauguration. Rick Perry might not have been aware of what the Secretary of Energy did until recently. Tom Price may have used his position in congress to enrich himself. The vetting process of many of Trump’s picks seems to have never been started, until they’re sitting down at the confirmation hearing which causes all sorts of problems.

Not least of which among these problems are that if the nominee is not confirmed, the process has to start all over again. Secondly, the way the nation runs could be disrupted if people are confirmed and then during the presidency, we discover criminal activity in a cabinet holder’s past. So far Trump has only made 30 nominations, with very little vetting done beforehand, and we have 660 to go.

660

660 people who are not even nominated yet. Trump’s Press Secretary Sean Spicer has said that there are picks, but they haven’t been announced. But why wait? Why wait? Why wouldn’t they make announcements as soon as possible so we can know who Trump is choosing?

There have been almost no appointments made to the National Security Council, an essential component of the government that communicates and analyzes key data and security concerns across the country, and no one has been chosen to replace the Obama team.

While the transition team has said it will keep the most important members of Obama’s administration, those that are vital for the function of our country, it is unclear how many positions will be empty until Trump appoints staff.

So far Trump’s highest cabinet members are ridiculously controversial and several of his highest appointments had to be changed. This is basic stuff, and he can’t even get staff for key positions, even ones that don’t require confirmation. While it’s not likely the country will fall into disarray while the transition takes place, this is just the beginning.

This is the first impression Donald J. Trump is making on us as President of the United States, and he went out of his way to fuck it up. He was running for President for two years, and when he finally won, he continued to campaign, and during none of that time did he take the time to learn anything about how the presidency works, and he continues to show no interest in how government works.

Instead of making appointments, he chose to hold rallies to boost his own ego. Instead of vetting potential staff, or even current staff, he picks twitter fights with civil rights heroes. Instead of learning about the enormity of what being President means, he has continued to lie straight to our faces.

Instead of doing his job, as President, he boasts and insults others.

Instead of staffing key security positions, instead of insuring that the country will be secure while he is President, Trump is busy being Trump. He will be busy answering questions about his conflicts of interest, he will be busy worrying about his money and his business, he will be busy inflating his own ego, he will be busy bullying others and praising Putin.

We should be worried, because while his staff, cabinet, and administration responsible for safeguarding American’s, Trump will be busy.

You want to know how I know that? Trump is taking his first few days off, and his team lied to us about it too. They didn’t tell America, but Trump did tell foreign papers he wouldn’t start on the weekend. That’s right. Trump won’t start till Monday.

Because Trump is busy.

Losing Election Faith

Yesterday the Electoral College cast their ballots for president, these are the real votes that matter, the ones that elect the president of the United States of America. There were protests and fights to make electors flip their votes from Trump. On the grounds of is disqualifying behavior, his temper, his possibly thousands of conflicts of interests, his incredibly poor choice in cabinet picks, the consensus that Russia directly interfered in the election process, and the fact that Hillary Clinton received nearly three million more votes than the soon to be president.

Now, no one is surprised that almost no Trump electors defected and he will be president, it was a hail mary at best and an incredibly shocking amount of electors would have to flip in order to dethrone Trump. However, something unprecedented did happen, not since the 1700s, an historic number of electors did flip, but mostly from Hillary. Even more surprising to me, they flipped from Hillary, to a republican, Collen Powell.

Now, I can understand the Electoral College, I guess, and the reason it’s there. But it needs revision, or something needs to change. Not only did my vote, and the millions of others who voted for Hillary Clinton,  net us absolutely no representation in the presidential election, the EC college showed me that even when our candidate gets the overwhelming majority of votes, they can still choose not to represent us. Most of these defectors from Hillary came from Washington State, Hillary won by 16%, 500,000 votes, a clear victory, and four electors did not vote for her, three instead voted for a republican.

So, even though Hillary won by a huge margin, she will lose the EC, and even more so because electors defected. This is the third time in my life the democrats won a non-incumbent race in the popular vote (Gore, Obama, Hillary) and again, the democrats will lose because that’s just how it works. The party that represents minorities such as blacks and LGBTQ, will lose with a majority vote, because they didn’t represent the minority, I guess. I don’t know, I honestly can’t figure it out. People tell me it’s so coastal elites don’t tell rural farmers how to live. I’m clearly not a coastal elite, in Amish country, PA, but whatever. But if that’s true, then isn’t it rural farmers telling coastal elites how to live? Whatever, all I know is that I can’t have faith in the election process anymore. If my vote isn’t thrown straight into nowhere, the elector I vote for might not even vote my way.

 

Recount Idiocy

I’m going to get right to the point, we all know exactly how Trump would respond if the situation was reversed between him and Hillary. This isn’t speculation or hyperbole, it’s straight from Trump and his supporters. Trump himself called for a revolution because he believed the electoral college was a ‘disaster’ when he thought Romney beat Obama. Trump said all the way up to the election, basically at every rally, that the election was rigged, and alluded that he would not accept the results of the election if he lost. Trump supporters were even suggesting a revolution to remove Hillary ‘by any means’

Bearing this in mind, calling those who oppose Trump’s election ‘whiners’ because of mostly peaceful protests is a little sad. But also bearing all of Trump’s claims of rigged polls in mind, the U.S. government officially stated Russia influenced the election through hacking, and that Trump is actively claiming there are three million illegal votes (with no evidence), a recount isn’t a bad idea.

While it’s very likely a recount won’t change much and the likelihood of hacking is extremely low, a recount is helpful for restoring the faith in a voting system Trump himself and many right-wing sources have tried so hard to undermine. Does it make sense to make unwarranted claims the dead vote, that illegal aliens vote, and that people vote multiple times, and then block attempts to ensure the vote is accurate? Because that is what Republicans are currently doing, blocking the effort to ensure the accuracy of the vote, and it makes no sense to do it while Trump is claiming the vote isn’t accurate.

I mean, it makes sense to claim three million illegal votes were counted for Hillary, from Trump’s point of view, even with no evidence. After all if Trump honestly believes that almost three million more votes were cast for Hillary, he’d have to admit he actually came in second in terms of popularity. It would also mean to represent America, he would have to do so in a way that represents more Hillary voters. If he convinces himself the popular vote isn’t real, if he convinces himself the actual number is whatever he believes it to be, then he wins, he has a mandate, he can do what he wants because he won the popular vote, in his head.

Now, I won’t mention that there were only four cases of voter fraud this election cycle, and most for Republicans, and now Republicans are blocking the recount efforts, and still painting the Liberals as the ones casting fraudulent ballots, no I won’t mention that, it’s a little off topic.

But my final thought is on this thing Liberals have. It’s a true problem, it’s this idea that we should listen to those that know more us. So when a group of election lawyers and data experts ask for a recount, like idiots we listen. So when people ask, ‘why the battleground states, why only those states?’ it’s because that’s what was recommended to ensure the validity of the voting system.

TL;DR
President-Elect Trump said that there are illegal votes, so we should recount. End, Of, Story.

The Complicated Relationship With Power, Money, and Our Presidential Candidates.

As more and more stories are coming to light that Trump might not be as honest and un-corrupt as he portrays, shocker. For example that the Florida Attorney General Bondi, asked Trump for money, he gave it to her, and his Trump University case was coincidentally dropped. Additionally Trump has benefited greatly from connections in Saudi Arabia and dealing with the Saudis, in spite of taking every attempt he can for decrying Hillary for the Clinton Foundation receiving money from Saudi Arabia.

There are two things that really bug about this, well three. The first is twofold. The direct comparison between Hillary and Trump in certain dealings. For example, money from the Saudis. Trump made a conscious decision to deal with them and do business with them, payment for a service. The Clinton Foundation on the other hand received a donation, with no obligation of services in return. Donations, I must point out, which leave a paper trail and we know exactly how much was donated and where the money goes.

Second in that first point, I really couldn’t care less about who receives money from the Saudis for reasons I’ll get into later. The problem is that Trump is making a big deal of it. That’s the problem with what almost everything Trump says, he makes accusations while being guilty of the same, if not worse. It’s the double standard that infuriates me. That if Hillary does it, she’s a sleazy politician. If Trump does it he’s a savvy business man. If Trump makes a 1.2 Million off of a speech to Wall Street, he’s just making money parting with his experience with money, if Hillary makes 200k off of a speech to Wall Street, she’s obviously in their pockets. If Trump uses laws to take advantage of bankruptcy and to strong arm small businesses out of their money, he’s just being the best businessman he can. If Hillary makes deals to the best of her advantage, she’s the worst politician ever.

Yes, Hillary makes money, the Clintons are good at making money and they worked fucking hard for it. Trump did too, off course, but there is a difference. The Clintons have used their platforms as huge figures to speak up for issues they believe are important, they have raised a charitable foundation that has ranked higher than the Red fucking Cross by Charity Watch, and they actually pay taxes. We have Trump on record having not paid any taxes at all in some years and uses loopholes to claim properties at low prices for tax purposes while trying to price the properties high to sell them.

Thirdly, with Trump and Hillary basically guilty of the same crimes, using the system to their advantage, I must point out, this is how it works. It just is. I’m sorry it just is, and it likely won’t change. If you’re rich and powerful, you bump elbows with others who are rich and powerful, end of story. There are huge, powerful, and most importantly, wealthy figures in the Middle East, and if you want to make connections and get things done, you deal with them. That goes for everyone. If you want to be big and have a lot of political connections and clout with the possibilities for lucrative deals, you basically deal with the Middle East. Is it right? Is it good? Should it be different? I don’t know, I don’t have those answers. The point is, that’s how international dealings are. Anyone who is anyone knows everyone. Trump himself says he “Loves the Saudis,” and has dealt with Osama Bin Laden’s half-brother.

The point is, Hillary and Trump are both players a game we are all a part of and if we want to see a change we can’t focus on just the players, but the game. Now, we have a choice between to players who could seize control of powerful influence over the game. We have Trump, who has a history of being a cutthroat businessman, who takes an active role in pushing other players down to elevate himself. We also have Hillary, who has also played the game, but has used her resources to try to elevate the other players of the game. Hillary is also the one who has at least feigned interest in reigning in Wall Street.

Trump Proves It.

Trump once again proves how much of a tremendous dick clown he is. After what felt like he was thanking the mass shooter for proving him right on Islamic terror, he went on to continue his rhetoric  on how we must remain ‘vigilant’. I would really like to know what he means by telling people to remain vigilant, because the best I can discern he means that you should be weary and afraid of Muslims.

Not surprising, Trump has turned attention on ‘Radical Islam’, on immigration and Syrian refugees instead of talking about how a man with a history of being investigated by the FBI and mental illness got a fucking gun legally. Sarah Palin also jumped in  to attack Paul Ryan as well. Why? Immigrants of course, that’s the real problem.

Once again the people who want a simple solution for a complex problem show how completely out of touch they are with the actual problem. The Orlando shooting, as well as the attack in San Bernardino, were both carried out by U.S. born citizens. Literally nothing Trump is proposing would have stopped these attacks, unless of course he his laying fear mongering ground work for broader powers against Muslims.

This is absolutely insane. I can not understand this line of thinking. Barring people on the terrorist watch list or with a history of mental instability is a violation of 2nd amendment rights, but restricting and judging the entire population of Muslims is what we should be doing?

No doubt that Republicans will continue to bash Obama for not saying ‘Radical Islam’ because we all know once he says it, it’ll go away, but they forget George W. Bush spoke with a very similar tone Obama did. If anything Bush Jr. made it even more clear we weren’t fighting Islam. Here are just a few quotes.

“Americans understand we fight not a religion; ours is not a campaign against the Muslim faith. Ours is a campaign against evil.” [9/27/01] “We’re taking action against evil people. Because this great nation of many religions understands, our war is not against Islam, or against faith practiced by the Muslim people.” [1/5/02] “Islam is a vibrant faith. Millions of our fellow citizens are Muslim. We respect the faith. We honor its traditions. Our enemy does not. Our enemy doesn’t follow the great traditions of Islam. They’ve hijacked a great religion.” [10/11/02]

Where Bush to say those things today he might be called a terrorist sympathizer.

Mexican Bias

Not surprising to anyone at this point, Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump is embattled with federal judge Gonzalo P. Curiel. The short version is that Trump says Gonzalo has a conflict of interest judging Trump University, because he’s, Mexican. There are so many layers of absurdity to unravel here, and the media and liberals are doing such a terrible job covering it. There is so much to cover her but other than just calling it Xenophobic.

First and foremost, for-profit schools are sued frequently like Corinthian Colleges and The Art Institute, and businesses that make use of predatory practices, like payday lenders, are frequently seen as taking advantage of the poor and new laws are made to reign them in. Take a moment to consider, those colleges were sued, SUCCESSFULLY.

Trump says he’s not being treated fairly, people need to tell him that businesses have ALREADY been sued and held accountable for their practices.

Now, with that out of the way and establishing Trump has no reason to bitch about his sleazy businesses practices coming under investigation, we can move on to what he’s saying about immigrants, because it’s a lot worse than just saying some guy is Mexican.

At the root of it, Trump is saying Gonzalo cannot serve the American public because of his Mexican heritage. Why? Because Trump is building a wall, and well, that’s his only reason. Even though Trump does well among Latinos, or so he says; because Gonzalo has Mexican parents, he must recuse himself of the case. So the logic here seems to be, Gonzalo has Mexican parents, therefor he most hate Trump because of the wall. Would this mean Asian judges couldn’t judge because Trump says ‘China is killing us’ and threatens trade wars?

So what does this mean? What is Trump trying to say? The message is essentially this, Gonzalo is a Mexican and can’t do the job. Gonzalo can’t be trusted to the job. Gonzalo must be biased towards Mexico and it must effect his ability to judge.

Does Trump say this? No, of course not, not directly, but that is the message that is coming out of his mouth. Everytime Trump gets in the media and people hear him speak they hear Trump say he’s a Mexican, very ‘pro-Mexico’, ‘Treats me unfairly’, etc. ect. Trump takes a lot of his problems, a lot of America’s problems, and boils it down to blaming a country or someone’s race.

This is a dangerous road, we all remember when people of Japanese heritage were put into camps during WWII for no other reason than because of their heritage. Of course this isn’t close to that level of terrible, but it is not a far arc until we get from here to there with this rhetoric. Gonzalo has Mexican heritage, therefor there must be something suspect there.