If the press, most likely via leaks from pissed off FBI-ers (without an independent prosecutor there is little chance the truth about Russia and Trump will be uncovered now during the DC investigations), learns Donald Trump, to improve his chances of winning the presidency, colluded with Russia during the presidential campaign, then Trump’s behavior was treasonous. He sold America down the river in hopes of winning the election. Russia = nation that works to destabilize democracies = an enemy nation. Trump’s betrayal of America – putting her in harm’s way for political gain = reason to impeach Trump. – R.T.
💗 Ezra Klein …
(editor’s note: I’ve made some sentences bold. – R.T.)
GOP Claim that Trumpcare Covers Pre-Existing Conditions is a Lie
Secret Negotiations, Backroom Deals and Bribes are Shameful
Congressman Jim McGovern, the senior House Democrat leading debate on the House floor against the American Health Care Act, slammed House Republicans yesterday for trying to steamroll the disastrous bill that would take healthcare away from millions of Americans.
“Pathetic. That’s the word to describe this process and this bill. If the American people could sue Congress for malpractice – my Republican friends would be in deep trouble. How could you do this? How could you do this to the people you represent?
“You are taking away essential health care protections. You are allowing insurance companies to discriminate against people with pre-existing conditions. You are supporting a bill that will throw 24 million people off of their health care and cut Medicaid by $880 billion to give a $1 trillion dollar tax break to the very wealthy. What is wrong with you?
“The American people were justifiably outraged – and they showed up by the thousands at town halls to express their anger. I guarantee you – your constituents are going to figure this out. And they will not be happy. And let me say to my colleagues, to claim or imply that this Republican plan covers pre-existing conditions, is a lie.
“Let me also say a few words about the process that has been used to bring this bill to the floor. It has been a disaster from start to finish with secret negotiations, backroom deals and bribes to buy off factions within the Republican conference. There have been no hearings on this bill whatsoever. And the Republican leadership couldn’t even slow down long enough to receive a score from the CBO.
“Are Republican leaders jamming this bill through to appease President Trump? Are they concerned that a new CBO score will confirm what we already know is true – that this bill would be devastating to the people of this country, force even more people to lose health care, especially older, sick and low-income Americans?
“We’re supposed to fix problems and help people – not merely settle for political cover that can be used in a press release. I urge my colleagues to vote no on this bill. Or better yet, do what they did a couple weeks ago and pull this disastrous bill.”
Full Text of Congressman McGovern’s Speech:
“That’s the word to describe this process and this bill.
“If the American people could sue Congress for malpractice – my Republican friends would be in deep trouble.
“How could you do this? How could you do this to the American people? How could you do this to the people you represent?
“You are taking away essential health care protections. You are allowing insurance companies to discriminate against people with pre-existing conditions. You are supporting a bill that will throw 24 million people off of their health care and cut Medicaid by $880 billion to give a $1 trillion dollar tax break to the very wealthy.
“What is wrong with you?
“Today’s rule self-executes three of the newest Republican amendments to the Republican health plan. This means, without any sort of debate or discussion whatsoever, the Palmer, MacArthur and Upton amendments will magically pass the House. What I find so hard to believe about this latest backroom deal is that it actually makes this bill worse! I didn’t think that was possible.
“To shore up support among this chamber’s most conservative faction, Representative MacArthur and others made a deal with President Trump to gut protections for individuals with pre-existing conditions and to eliminate essential health benefits like maternity care, mental health treatment, and prescription drug coverage, just to name a few. These are among the most popular provisions of the Affordable Care Act.
“The American people were justifiably outraged – and they showed up by the thousands at town halls to express their anger. And there were some on the Republican side who actually got it. They listened to their constituents and they had the courage to stand up and say no.
“But, when Republican leaders once again came up short in their whip count, Representative Upton ran to the White House and concocted a deal with President Trump to try to win back votes. His amendment adds a measly $8 billion spread out over 5 years in a futile attempt to soften the devastating impact that this bill will have on millions and millions of Americans with pre-existing conditions.
“$8 billion over 5 years sounds like a lot, but when we are talking about an entire country, it really isn’t. But don’t take it from me. Robert Graboyes from the conservative Mercatus Center said ‘the $8 billion amount is a pittance … spread over five years, it’s a fifth of a pittance.” This is not a left-wing organization. This is an organization funded by Koch Industries, the Koch brothers, my Republican friends love the Koch brothers.
“What’s more, some analysts have already estimated that an additional $200 billion will be needed over a decade to adequately fund high-risk pools, so this amendment is billions upon billions of dollars short. As the Center for American Progress points out, the Upton Amendment ‘will have almost no effect.’
“My colleagues who have been won over by this should be ashamed of themselves. We’re supposed to fix problems and help people – not merely settle for political cover that can be used in a press release. $8 billion to cover a $200 billion shortfall? Back where I come from, we call that being a “cheap date.”
“I guarantee you – your constituents are going to figure this out. And they will not be happy.
“For the so-called moderate Republicans who have contorted themselves this week to find a fix to the damage being done to people with pre-existing conditions, I have breaking news: I have a magic bullet fix if Republicans really want to protect people with pre-existing conditions. Are you ready? Brace yourselves. Don’t change the law! Everyone is already protected by the Affordable Care Act – including people with pre-existing conditions and those who struggle to find affordable care.
“And let me say to my colleagues, to claim or imply that this Republican plan covers pre-existing conditions, is a lie. Plain and simple.
“Let me also say a few words about the process that has been used to bring this bill to the floor. It has been a disaster from start to finish with secret negotiations, backroom deals, and bribes to buy off factions within the Republican conference. There have been no hearings on this bill whatsoever. And the Republican leadership couldn’t even slow down long enough to receive a score from the CBO.
“I have one simple question: What’s the rush? Wait a week and get a CBO score. Why is that such a radical idea?
“Are Republican leaders jamming this bill through to appease President Trump? Are they concerned that a new CBO score will confirm what we already know is true – that this bill would be devastating to the people of this country, force even more people to lose health care, especially to older, sick, and low-income Americans?
“Or maybe, Republican leaders are worried that their colleagues will go home over the week long break and hear from their constituents who overwhelmingly oppose this effort to repeal the Affordable Care Act.
“Honestly, I don’t know how my Republican friends can defend this terrible, closed, authoritarian process. It is an absolute disgrace. So I urge my colleagues to vote no on this bill. Or better yet, do what they did a couple weeks ago and pull this disastrous bill.”
Your Voices Matter!
After a three-year process, Worcester’s Urban Agriculture Ordinance is moving forward!
It will be vetted at the Planning Board Hearing on May 3rd at 5:30 pm in the Levi Lincoln Room of City Hall.
Your testimony and presence will make a difference in passing this ordinance.
Why might you care?
Are you an aspiring small farmer?
The Urban Ag Ordinance grants the right to farm in certain zones throughout the city, and allows farming by permit in many others.
Are you a beekeeper?
We are working with the city to fine tune the beekeeping regulations. Your voice and opinion is vital here!
Are you an avid gardener who might like to sell some of what you grow?
The city ordinance makes provisions for on-site farm stands to allow sales from your garden.
Are you a foodie who would like more fresh local produce in your neighborhood?
More local farms means more fresh produce available in your neighborhood and throughout the city.
Are you a business that depends on access to local foods, or would like to feature local produce more prominently in your retail or restaurant operation?
This ordinance will increase access to high-quality, locally grown produce in the city for consumers and businesses.
City Manager Augustus eloquently stated, “Urban agriculture can improve access to fresh, locally grown foods, put vacant or underutilized land to productive use, and has the potential to create economic and entrepreneurial opportunities.”
The Worcester Urban Agriculture Ordinance embraces zoning changes that will support small scale gardeners, community gardens and food entrepreneurs who wish to farm commercially in Worcester.
Please come and share your story about why we need to pass urban agriculture!
If you can’t come but have something to say, send an email … we can read your remarks. Please email testimony to firstname.lastname@example.org, and please include your zip code to show city residency.
Thank you so much!
Manager of the Worcester Food Policy Council
From Clark University …
(I’ve made some sentences bold. – R.T.)
The nature of international conflict has evolved in recent decades.
Rather than conflict between state militaries, warfare increasingly takes place within regional conflict systems involving both states and non-state armed groups.
Understanding the internal dynamics of these organizations is an important part of understanding the nature of international conflict, according to Ora Szekely, Clark University assistant professor of political science. Their sometimes surprising policy choices have important (and sometimes unintended) consequences for both their long-term prospects and for the conflict itself.
Szekely explores these dynamics within the context of the Arab-Israeli conflict in her latest book, “The Politics of Militant Group Survival in the Middle East: Resources, Relationships and Resistance.”
Szekely draws from field research conducted in Lebanon, Israel, the West Bank, Jordan, Syria and Egypt to compare the performances of four key non-state actors of the Arab-Israeli conflict ecosystem: The Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), Hamas, Amal, and Hizbullah.
Her research reveals how strategic domestic and foreign policy choices affect certain groups’ ability to “militarily resist and politically recover from confrontations with far more powerful adversaries.”
“We tend to think of wars as being either traditional interstate wars, like WWII, or smaller, local civil wars,” Szekely said. “But today, most conflicts take place as part of complex conflict systems involving multiple states and armed militant groups. Yet, even within the same conflict system, different militant groups often demonstrate very different abilities to resist attacks by their enemies, and to recover politically afterward. Understanding the roots of those differences can help us understand the dynamics of these conflict systems more broadly.”
In the course of researching the book, Szekely attended events organized by Hizbullah in Beirut and political protests led by communists in Amman.
She interviewed former PLO members in both the spacious Ministry of the Interior of the Palestinian Authority in Ramallah and in the decidedly less well-appointed offices of various Palestinian factions based in the in refugee camps of Damascus and Beirut, as well as members of the Palestinian parliament sympathetic to Hamas in the West Bank.
“I met with members of the Lebanese parliament from parties across the political spectrum, veterans of the Israeli military, and Palestinians in both refugee camps and political offices,” she said. She also spoke with journalists, aid workers, and UN officials around the region. “These interviews, combined with secondary sources, helped me to understand and compare the internal dynamics of a set of extremely complicated organizations in an extremely complicated region.”
Szekely’s research straddles the intersection of comparative politics and international relations.
She focuses primarily on foreign and domestic policies of non-state and proto-state military actors (rebel groups, guerrillas, insurgents, terrorists, etc.), particularly in the Middle East.
At Clark, she teaches courses on Middle Eastern politics, identity politics, civil war, and forced migration. She also is affiliated with the University programs in Peace Studies, Women’s and Gender Studies, and Comparative Race and Ethnic Studies. She holds a Ph.D. in political science from McGill University.
NSBE Boston invites you to join us at the March for Science Boston on Saturday, April 22nd from 1pm – 4pm, at the Boston Common.
This is a family friendly event and it will be outdoors.
March For Science is a celebration of people who love and support science.
The Boston rally is part of the National March for Science taking place in Washington, DC.
NSBE Boston is an exhibition partner for the 2017 the March For Science Boston and will have an exhibition stand. NSBE Boston chapter President, Chiderah Okoye, will be a featured speaker at the Rally.
Date: April 22
Time: 1 pm – 4 pm
Location: Boston Common
Volunteer with NSBE Boston : If you are a interested in being a volunteer at the Boston March for Science, please contact Lenny – PCI@nsbeboston.org
March for Science champions publicly funded and publicly communicated science as a pillar of human freedom and prosperity.
We are committed to making science accessible to everyone and encouraging people from diverse backgrounds and experiences to pursue science careers.
Diverse science teams outperform homogeneous teams and produce broader, more creative, and stronger work. This group is inclusive of all individuals and types of science.
For more information, please visit the March for Science website – www.marchforscienceboston.com
Innocence Project director to speak at Clark University, April 20:
The California Innocence Project, founded in 1999, espouses three goals:
to free innocent people from prison
to help train law students to become great lawyers
and to change laws and procedures to decrease the number of wrongful convictions and improve the justice system.
The California Innocence Project’s founding director, Justin P. Brooks, will talk about the organization’s crucial efforts to accomplish those key goals, during a talk at Clark University, from 5 to 6:30 p.m. Thursday, April 20, in the Higgins Lounge at Dana Commons, Maywood and Florence streets.
This event, free and open to the public, is sponsored by Clark’s Study Abroad and LEEP Center, and by CAPA – The Global Education Network.
Brooks is executive director at the Institute for Criminal Defense Advocacy and professor of law at the California Western School of Law, in San Diego, where he also directs the California Innocence Project, a law school clinic that is a founding member of global Innocence Network and has helped launch organizations throughout Latin America.
“Over the years, it has given me great joy to see our work go global in an ‘innocence movement’ that grows bigger and stronger every day,” Brooks writes.
Brooks has spent his career litigating wrongful conviction cases. He recently was featured in Time magazine, and presented popular TED Talks. His high-profile cases include the exoneration of Brian Banks, a former NFL player wrongly convicted of rape when in high school.
Brooks teaches a global seminar, titled “Wrongful Conviction,” at the CAPA London Study Center.
The seminar is open to Clark University students.
Global Seminars are three to four-week, 1-2 unit summer programs providing students with intensive study and experiential opportunities.