IN THE NEWS- Trump's Plan For Autocracy: "We're Trying To 'Identify The Pockets Of Independence And Seize Them.'" Russell Vought, former Trump official
“In studies of authoritarianism, this is called autocratic capture... So you purge people who will not be loyal to you. So, loyalty becomes a requirement, not expertise, and you re-staff government with people who will do your bidding...
... Strongmen and authoritarians are not like other politicians. Many of them are under investigation when they run for office. That was true with Berlusconi in Italy, with Putin, with Trump in '16 — 2016. And now he has his legal woes. Netanyahu. And so the purpose of getting into power becomes to capture the judicial system and make yourself untouchable. And we have an example in Israel now with Netanyahu facing corruption charges. And so he's very focused on judicial reform, and this is why there are enormous protests against him...” -Ruth Ben-Ghiat, a history professor at New York University and an expert on authoritarianis, PBS Newshour
“Trump wants to revive the practice of “impounding” funds, refusing to spend money Congress has appropriated for programs a president doesn’t like — a tactic that lawmakers banned under President Richard Nixon... He intends to strip employment protections from tens of thousands of career civil servants, making it easier to replace them if they are deemed obstacles to his agenda. And he plans to scour the intelligence agencies, the State Department and the defense bureaucracies to remove officials he has vilified... Trump and his advisers are making no secret of their intentions — proclaiming them in rallies and on his campaign website, describing them in white papers and openly discussing them.” Charlie Savage
“Trumps “quantum leap to revolutionize the American standard of living” includes baby bonuses to create a new baby boom and the design of 10 new “Freedom Cities” in the U.S. Axios
“We should be concerned about this as Republicans. I’m having more ‘rational Republicans’ coming up to me and saying, ‘I just don’t know how long I can stay in this party. Now our party is becoming known as a group of kind of extremist, populist over-the-top [people] where no one is taking us seriously anymore.” -Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska)
"Whenever Trump or the political right calls ANYTHING a hoax, it turns out THAT'S the hoax." Tweet
"GOP's crumbling case against Biden on crime, immigration and inflation... With 2024 around the corner, the U.S. is making measurable progress in the areas where Biden has been most vulnerable to GOP attacks... illegal border crossings dropped to the lowest level in over two years in June, the first full month under Biden’s new, restrictive asylum rule, which makes it much harder to attain asylum... Homicides were down 9% in the first half of this year over the same period last year, according to a study of 37 major cities from the Council on Criminal Justice. Violent crime rates are generally down across the board, thought they're still higher than 2019 levels.. as inflation retreats, there are signs of a shift. Consumer sentiment, as measured by a long-running survey conducted by the University of Michigan, is the highest in two years — a jump “largely attributed to the continued slowdown inflation along with stability in labor markets.” -Axios
"Florida's board of education approved new guidelines this week with "benchmark clarifications," including one for middle school students that states "instruction includes how slaves developed skills which, in some instances, could be applied for their personal benefit..." - Reuters
"Adults know what slavery really involved. It involved rape. It involved torture. It involved taking a baby from their mother. It involved some of the worst examples of ... depriving people of humanity in our world. How is it that anyone could suggest that, in the midst of these atrocities, that there was any benefit to being subjected to this level of dehumanization?" said VP Kamala Harris – Reuters
"Unfortunately, it has to be said – slavery wasn't a jobs program that taught beneficial skills. It was literally dehumanizing and subjugated people as property because they lacked any rights or freedoms. Will Hurd, republican candidate for president
Try That in a Small Town: “I think the video (that was pulled by CMT) obscured the point of the lyrics. Aldean’s fans get it, but for me the video definately looks like it could end up with more people dead for mistakes like opening the wrong car door. The video does make some black vs. white issues that aren’t in the song lyrics. – Brianna Inamgua, tweet
The globe is shifting towards superheated climate - World needs more concrete actions than empty promises to tackle the looming threat... Disturbingly, Canada’s 2023 wildfire season alone emitted an estimated 12 gigatons of carbon, negating almost a year’s worth of carbon savings from renewable electricity..." What’s even more disconcerting is that the growth of renewables in the past decade has been a paltry 3%, woefully inadequate to meet the escalating energy needs, which have surged by more than 18% in the same period... Gulf News
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