The roll call 126-302 vote (Roll call 361) defeating the Trade Adjustment Assistance (TAA) bill was a result worth a little celebrating on Friday, since it was a very decisive victory on that particular vote, and also stopped the Trade Promotion Authority (TPA) fast track bill from being sent to the President's desk for signature. If the vote on TAA hadn't failed, it would have been far more difficult (I don't say impossible as many do) to defeat all manner of “free trade” agreements (aka multinational sovereignty agreements), including the currently scheduled Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), Trans-Atlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP), and the Trade in Services (TiSA) agreements over the next year or so.
Everything we know about these agreements is that they would have been a disaster for all but an extremely small segment of the people of the United States. So, we ought to be overjoyed that, for now, fast-track is stalled in the House, and may get pigeon-holed there for quite some time to come, if the re-vote on TAA fails. Still as Kevin Zeese and Margaret Flowers, and Bill Black say in their recent posts, this stall may be short-lived if we don't keep up the pressure and make sure that the Republicans and Democrats in Congress, along with the President are, unsuccessful in reversing Friday's vote on the TAA. Read more about TPP: Fast –Track, the Next Rounds In Congress
Probably a bit too much like a dark tapestry, but that's what I did so that the white peony flower didn't flow out.
And I don't know what I did to deserve this: Read more about In the garden: More effloresence
Columbines under the evil Norway Maple. They self-seed, and the winter was tough, so I don't have as many as I did last year. But then, even with lots of perennials and self-seeding annuals, every year is different anyhow! Read more about In the garden: Effloresence!
It's late, and I have to post some flower pictures, so this will be a bit scattered.
1) Have I mentioned lately what an asshole Obama is? His meeting with the House caucus didn't turn the tide on Friday, and could even have made things worse; some members came out saying he'd impugned their integrity. Welcome aboard the S.S. Lame Duck, Mr. President! Read more about Quick random thoughts on TAA/TPP
Each little white flower in the galaxy will turn into a raspberry, so most of my patch came through the winter. (Although there seems to be underground movement by shoots away from the source of pain and danger, the road, and into other beds farther away from it.) Anyhow, the pedestrians who pick them will be happy!) Read more about In the garden: Little stars
I have a bad habit of looking at employment opportunities on about every web site I visited, even when I visit the zoo. Today was no exception. And what to my wondering eyes should bleed all over the page but a whole list of jobs with 29 hour work weeks! -- at least in the lowly positions, which are most of them. So sorry, college students. Thanks to a horribly thought out law, you can't earn that extra $400/month... Unless you can find two employers who will allow you to coordinate the irregular hours that typically come with part-time work, not to mention the extra commute time. Read more about The 29 hour work week: It's not just for nasty Republican restaurant owners anymore ;-).
Yesterday, and the day before, I interacted with librarians in Avon, NJ, regarding my anti-TPP-Ignorance flyer. Today I added 2 librarians in Belmar, NJ, 2 in Bradley Beach, NJ, and 3 in Wall, NJ to the list.
I didn't bring my tablet, so there's no video evidence of what I found out. If you don't want to take my word for it, that'd be a good thing if you grabbed your own tablet or cell phone, and did your own video survey where you live, and then posted the video and summarized your findings. Read more about 9 / 9 (100%) of NJ Librarians Never heard of "TPP, the Trans Pacific Partnership"
There are 246 Republicans and 188 Democrats in the House. Republicans, led by John Boehner and Paul Ryan, say they are confident about having enough votes to hold a successful floor vote on Friday, June 12th.. However, Politico reports that Republican sources are saying they will get anywhere from 180 – 200 votes for fast-track, which doesn't sound very different from their at least 190 vote estimate as of June 3rd.
So, that leaves anywhere from 46 – 66 Republican opponents of the legislation. The top of this range is very near the maximum of 57 Republicans that TPP opponents have previously estimated could vote against it, except that on the high side it acknowledges the possibility that Republicans may have lost ground compared to a week ago.
Last week, also, supporters of the bill reportedly could not count on more than 17 Democrats to vote for it, and no more than 20 after all the maneuvering and politicking has occurred. Today, the number of committed TPP Democrats seems to be 20, with the recent addition of Don Beyer (D-VA), Kathleen Rice (D-NY), and Jim Himes (D-CT). So, it appears not much progress has been made toward the 218 votes required to carry the fast-track authority in spite of all the activity and much posturing from the pro-TPP forces. Read more about Fast -Track: It Looks Like It's In Pelosi's Lap or Maybe Not!
Once, clever people seeking to make money by flattering rich people could become writers; now, they can become economists. For the merely glib, however, there is always the option of being an economics correspondent.
Take the example of one Justin Fox. Read more about Skill-Biased Technological Change
After the simple sequence of forsythia, lilacs, iris, roses comes the complexity; lots of flowers starting to bloom all at once!
The very first blossom from my wildflowers ("Shady Mix"). I know I sewed them too thickly, but last year I did the same thing, and it worked fine, and I always worry that not enough will come up. This will be pretty amazing when the poppies start blooming! Read more about In the garden: The flowers that bloom in the spring
This is another in a series on Democratic Representatives who recently decided that pleasing their President, and their minority leader in the House, and protecting the expectations of potential profits of multinational corporations, was more important than protecting democracy, national, state, and local sovereignty, American Jobs, the environment, the climate, the capability to regulate corporate behavior for the public good, and net neutrality, among may other valuable things. In my previous posts I covered the statements of Don Beyer, Democrat of Virginia's 8th District and then Kathleen Rice, Democrat of New York's 4th.
This time the focus of my attention will be Jim Himes (D-CT) who represents the 4th Congressional District in Connecticut. I'll be doing a point-by-point critique of his reasons for announcing his support of the TPP. Read more about TPP: Jim Himes (D-CT), Another Putting “Free Trade” Above National Sovereignty and Democracy
TPP: Kathleen Rice (D-NY) Is the Latest to Put “Free Trade” Above National Sovereignty and Democracy
I blogged a critique of Don Beyer, Democratic Representative in the Virginia 8th Congressional District to protest his announcement of support for the Trade Promotion Authority (TPA) bill followed by the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) legislation. This past Saturday, Kathleen Rice (D-NY, 4th Congressional District) became the latest to join President Obama's effort to elevate corporations above the people through the TPA, followed by the TPP legislation, and, he hopes the passage later on of the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP), and the Trade in Services Agreement (TISA). This post is my reply to Congressman Rice's justification, in talking point/response format, for joining the pro- fast track-TPP forces. Read more about TPP: Kathleen Rice (D-NY) Is the Latest to Put “Free Trade” Above National Sovereignty and Democracy
Recently, my wife, Bonnie, sent an e-mail to Don Beyer, our Democratic Representative in the Virginia 8th Congressional District to express her opinion opposing fast-track/TPP and to tell him that she wanted him to vote against it in Congress. In reply, she received a form e-mail which was non-responsive to hers, but also stated his support for all four trade bills and his talking points on the subject.
Congressman Beyer's e-mail made her angry and she asked that since I'm the writer in the family, I write a reply from both of us for him. Since drafting this reply, I've learned that Don Beyer has announced his support for fast-track in a statement on his web site. Below is our reply to him, in talking point/response format, sometimes cast in the first person, for his consideration, and anyone else's who is interested in “free trade” agreements. Read more about TPP: Don Beyer (D-VA) Puts “Free Trade” Above National Sovereignty and Democracy