Assorted political links, none of which makes me happy

Slate reports that USA Gymnastics ignored reports of abusive coaches for years.

•Back during the Cold War, the military buried a lot of toxic waste at one Greenland site under the ice. Now global warming is releasing it.

•Jessica Valent has received rape-threat tweets against her five-year-old child. Columbia Journalism Review looks at how Twitter handles these problems.

This link about the Heritage Foundation issuing new warnings about Iran The Ultimate Threat shows how some right-wingers refuse to let go of a designated enemy. Sure, we just negotiated a deal with Iran forestalling them building nuclear weapons (which they may not have planned to do), but the deal will expire in ten years! What if they go nuclear then, huh? What if they send Hezbollah terrorist cells to attack the US!

In short deal or no deal, regardless of what Iran’s policies are, we have to take them out. If we don’t and if they do go nuclear, we might not be able to “counter and contain” them — i.e. even if they’re not a threat, we might lose our ability to push them around or even invade and that’s a Bad Thing. And they’re an oppressive theocracy, which while true, is just as true of our good friend Saudi Arabia. Nor do I think Iran destabilizes the Middle East more than we did with the Iraq invasion—but as Heritage supported that, I doubt they’ll see that as a good comparison.

•Here’s a look at some of the corporate welfare programs costing the government billions (in both payouts and tax cuts). And according to some local governments, telecoms are charging low rates to business customers by slashing fees that fund 9-1-1 systems.

•As a former journalist, I’m disturbed that we still get national election coverage dwelling on things like what Trump eats: he enjoys fast food because he’s a busy guy and it’s yes, fast!

•When Trump started his campaign last year, he ignored Republican orthodoxy on economic issues (e.g., tax breaks for the rich, deregulation, private Social Security) and talked about boosting Social Security, a hugely popular idea with Trump voters. I am not surprised that in his recent policy proposals, he’s shifted back to classic Republicanism. After all, given how devoted his base is, he may figure he has nothing to lose.

•Not disturbing but I think it’s only fair to note that Trump did not evict a mother and baby from one of his rallies.

•As slacktivist points out, the KKK apparently thinks endorsing Trump won’t hurt his campaign (“They think they’re winning.”). And the far right John Birch Society is apparently moving back into the conservative mainstream (as noted at the link, their history includes accusing Eisenhower of being a Commie agent, seeing Communism behind the civil-rights movement and that the Muslim Brotherhood is just another front for the International Communist Conspiracy).

•The new right-wing craze for requiring parents bury or cremate aborted or miscarried fetuses could cost the parents $2,000 a fetus. Of course the government’s not going to pay! But one anti-abortion group has suggested abortion doctors get the bill.

•The Justice Department finds Baltimore’s Police Department is massively rotten. To give one example, a single black man was randomly stopped 30 times in four years without any charges being filed. He’s just one of many blacks —and it’s primarily blacks — who get stopped for no other reason than being there. In one case, with a federal investigator monitoring, one officer nevertheless told another to “make something up” so they could stop a guy.

•Trump’s claim that if he loses that’s proof the election was rigged is getting serious punditry coverage.

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Filed under Politics, Undead sexist cliches

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