Friday, May 3, 2019

Notations From the Grid (Special Friday Edition): On Quite a Week In Our World

 Photo Illustration by The New York Times; Photo by Lisa Lerertion

As part of our commitment to bring perspectives to bear on our World, we hereby present discourse of the past 24 hours on the state of the 2020 Campaign courtesy Lisa Lerer of the New York Times , perspectives presented by the Bulwark on William Barr  and his apparent expansive view of the challenges along with what went in Venezuela, The NRA & Facebook (where we have a presence)  courtesy the Economist--as it  has again been quite an interesting week as we wish all a great weekend from our hometown, @LagunaNiguelCty:

Lisa LererHi. Welcome to On Politics, your guide to the day in national politics. I’m Lisa Lerer, your host.

When I joined the press horde covering Joe Biden’s first campaign visit to Iowa this week, I was struck by how often I heard the same refrain. Here’s how Greg Renaud, a retired teacher from Pleasant Hill, put it:
“I like Joe. We need someone in the first place who’s electable in 2020. Look, my own personal beliefs are probably a little to the left of where he is, but independents are going to be crucial in 2020.”
In my conversations with voters — even those who said they felt strong affection for Mr. Biden — it was pretty clear that practicality, not passion, was the driving force in their support for the former vice president. It was a sentiment that seemed to transcend age, gender and ideological orientation.
Now, I’m generally a cynic. But when it comes to presidential politics, I believe in love. No one enjoys suffering through a bad date — particularly when it’s a date that could keep going for four long years.
That means pragmatic support is generally not the stuff of winning presidential bids. (See: Romney, Mitt; Clinton, Hillary; Kerry, John.)
Of course, given how badly Democrats want President Trump out of office, that instinct to follow their hearts could certainly play out differently this cycle. But with 21 candidates running (oh hey, Senator Michael Bennet!), voters certainly have plenty of time to play the field. And those candidates have time to make their case about why they are best positioned to defeat Mr. Trump.
Mr. Biden is pushing his own electability hard, arguing in his early appearances that he can win back the working-class white voters who hurt Mrs. Clinton in Pennsylvania, Wisconsin and Michigan. He implied that a tweetstorm launched by Mr. Trump Wednesday, after a firefighters’ union endorsed Mr. Biden, was a sign that the White House is afraid of his candidacy.
On the stump, though, he doesn’t woo voters with sweeping promises or big plans for the future. I found his answer to climate protesters at an event in Des Moines on Wednesday quite telling.
“I got there before any of the other candidates did,” he told a group of demonstrators wearing penguin masks, saying he authored a bill to address climate change in the mid-1980s.
Lisa Lerer
Two days earlier, Beto O’Rourke had released a $5 trillion proposalto combat climate change. At least a dozen candidates say they are willing to consider a carbon tax. Senator Elizabeth Warren would enact a “total moratorium” on new federal fossil fuel leases. Gov. Jay Inslee of Washington is basing his entire campaign on the issue 

But when Mr. Biden delved into specifics, he brought up the 2009 stimulus bill, meandering through a number of ideas to expand renewable fuels, promote wind energy and put electric charging stations on highways.
Like the climate plans he mentioned, Mr. Biden’s economic plans are largely the kinds of proposals Democrats have pushed for years — ending some corporate tax cuts, protecting entitlement programs, and the “Buffet Rule,” a tax on the wealthy first proposed by the Obama administration eight years ago. On health care, he would protect and expand the current law by giving people the option to buy into Medicare — a position similar to the one Mrs. Clinton took in 2016.
As Mr. Biden made clear in his first campaign speech on Monday, this is a restoration, not a revolution.

We also saw this from the Team at the Bulwark in the aftermath of the Barr Testimony before the US Senate Judiciary Committee as he refused the testify before the House Judiciary Committee on Thursday--and as the President has stated that he will not allow anyone to testify as he noted that he has been transparent all along:  

What Barr’s Rift With Mueller Reveals
By Andrew Egger

Mostly that Barr lacks credibility for how he has handled the aftermath of the Mueller investigation.
Bill Barr: One Man Judiciary
By Kim Wehle

Bill Barr decided to be Trump's defense lawyer, the AG, and the Supreme Court, all rolled into one.
Make Ratfucking Great Again (We kid...)
By Andrew Egger

Why is the new generation of tricksters and frauds so pathetic?
We Should Not Have Been Surprised About Bill Barr
By Charles Sykes

William Safire had his number 27 years ago.

How to get rid of Nicolás Maduro

An attempt to depose the dictator appears to have failed. Try again
Facebook’s future
Mark Zuckerberg wants to build WeChat for the West

It will revolve around turning the social network’s messaging services into something akin to a Chinese mega-app
German business
Why so many big German companies are in trouble

Bayer is the latest DAX firm burnt by a takeover of an American firm
A defining moment
Caster Semenya’s case sets a big precedent for women’s sport

Using a testosterone limit to determine who is female will probably fail to settle the matter
Wayne’s world
What’s going on at the NRA?

Political infighting is tearing America’s biggest gun lobby group apart
Up and at ’em
An activist group harnesses Australians’ political disillusionment

GetUp! is giving politicians who ignore climate change a run for their money
Art history
Was Leonardo the supreme genius, or just our kind of guy?
Contemporary reverence for da Vinci is more about our age than his oeuvre

Profound challenging times as we leave all w/this: 

Air Force's F-35A Makes Combat Debut in Iraq
Two Lightning II stealth jets were used to conduct an airstrike using a Joint Direct Attack Munition to strike a tunnel network and a weapons cache belonging to ISIS.
Read More

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