You are browsing the archive for 2021 February 17.

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QAnon was devastated to see Biden on Air Force One because they thought Trump was secretly using it: report

February 17, 2021 in Blogs

By Raw Story

President Joe Biden used Air Force One over the weekend to fly to Delaware, but on Tuesday evening, Biden also used the plane to fly to a town hall in Wisconsin. The moment wasn’t anything other than a president hopping on his ride, but for QAnon it was devastating.

Speaking to Ayman Mohyeldin Wednesday, NBC News reporter Ben Collins explained that the far-right conspiracy group is in a kind of “holding pattern” as Biden finishes his first month in office.

“You know, they hold on to these little nuggets, they hope in the future there are — they believe right now there are two presidents and this will all get sorted out on March 4th,” explained Collins. “But they lose hope along the way. For example, last night when Joe Biden boarded Air Force One, the real one, for the first time, that was a blow. They felt betrayed by this. They thought that Air Force One was still being used by President Trump in secret.”

He went on to say that it’s likely that they’ll explain it away, but that last night was a big blow.

“This is winding its way through text messages, through churches in the United States, who are preaching sort of the gospel of Q without the QAnon branding, and they are saying March 4th is a big day for them and one of them said today they’re halfway through this. They are planning for this to be a years-long thing,” Collins also said.

He explained that the good part of the conspiracy is that they believe “the plan” and they’re a very “disorganized group,” he said.

“The worry with QAnon is lone wolf wolves who take this too seriously,” Collins warned. “We have seen lone wolves for 2 1/2 years now, we’ve seen real criminal acts, murders. While I don’t expect some massive outpouring on March 4th, we have to be on the lookout for desperate QAnon believers in the future.”

See his analysis below:


QAnon didn’t think Biden could use Air Force One

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Source: ALTERNET

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How the Perfect Lawn Became a Symbol of the American Dream

February 17, 2021 in History

By Farrell Evans

And of course, all that grass inspired innovations in mowing.

With the rise of suburbia in post-WWII America, the perfect lawn became a potent symbol of the American dream. Whether a sprawling sweep of green mowed in crisp diagonal bands or a more modest swatch of grass and clover, a lawn expressed the national ideal that, with hard work, sacrifice and perhaps a little help from Uncle Sam, home ownership and a patch of land could be within reach for every American.

By contrast, Europe’s historical development of lawns had largely expressed values of elitism and power: Some medieval castle dwellers needed their tall grass hand-cut by scythes in order to see approaching enemies. Landowners with livestock required fields cut down to grazeable heights. And wealthy people with leisure time tamed nature into neatly trimmed surfaces for sporting endeavors like golf, tennis and lawn bowling.

And while early American landowners had appropriated some of those values, by the mid 20th century, the nation had grown its own, less elitist image of the lawn. That evolving history would be shaped by the G.I. Bill, widespread home ownership, egalitarian ideals, technological advancements in mowing, golf courses and the saga of race.

Man mowing his well kept lawn.

The G.I. Bill and Home Ownership

In 1944, President Franklin Roosevelt signed the Servicemen’s Readjustment Act, better known as the G.I. Bill, to provide educational and home loan benefits for millions of veterans returning from World War II. According to the Department of Veteran Affairs, the program backed 2.4 million low-interest home loans for veterans between 1944 and 1952. As homeownership rates rose from 44 percent in 1940 to almost 62 percent in 1960, owning a home became synonymous with the American dream.

A manicured lawn became a physical manifestation of that dream. “A fine lawn makes a frame for a dwelling,” explained Abe Levitt, who together with his two sons built Levittowns, housing communities in New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania that came to define the cookie-cutter homogeneity of the burgeoning suburbs. “It is the first thing a visitor sees. And first impressions are the lasting ones.”

Frederick Law Olmsted, Father of the American Lawn

Frederick Law Olmsted is best known as the landscape architect of more than two dozen prominent public green spaces—including New York’s Central Park and Chicago’s Washington Park—all known for their rolling meadows. But in 1868, he received …read more

Source: HISTORY

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Trump's 'nasty shot' at Mitch McConnell's wife is a preview of coming 'ugliness': reporter

February 17, 2021 in Blogs

By Raw Story

Former President Donald Trump on Tuesday night unleashed an angry attack against Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY) in which he called his one-time ally a “dour, sullen, and unsmiling political hack.”

New York Times reporter Maggie Haberman appeared on CNN Wednesday to break down the president’s current fight with his own party’s leadership, and she said one of the most notable parts of Trump’s angry tirade at McConnell was his attack on the senator’s wife, Elaine Chao, who served as Trump’s own secretary of transportation.

Trump said that McConnell has “no credibility on China because of his family’s substantial Chinese business holdings,” a reference to the business of Chao’s father, shipping magnate James S. C. Chao.

“Trump took a shot at McConnell’s wife, Elaine Chao… and it was a nasty shot,” she said. “And it was a sort of threatening shot about how McConnell is conflicted on China because of his family business ties to China.”

Haberman added “that’s the kind of ugliness you’re also going to see from Donald Trump going forward” as he seeks revenge on Republicans whom he believes undermined his presidency.

Watch the video below.


Trump’s ‘nasty shot’ at Mitch McConnell’s wife is a preview of coming ‘ugliness’: NYT’s Haberman

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Source: ALTERNET

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Here's how Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez responded to Biden's refusal to forgive $50k of student debt

February 17, 2021 in Blogs

By Common Dreams

After President Joe Biden told the nation during a CNN town hall Tuesday night that he “will not” cancel $50,000 in student loan debt per borrower, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez was among the many progressives who pushed back against the president’s false narrative about who would benefit from the move and urged advocates to keep up the pressure.

When a town hall attendee said during Tuesday’s event in Milwaukee, Wisconsin student loan debt is “crushing” her family, friends, and millions of Americans and urged Biden to unilaterally forgive a minimum of $50,000 per borrower, Biden responded, “I will not make that happen.”

The president went on to say that he doesn’t want to forgive “billions of dollars of debt for people who have gone to Harvard and Yale and Penn” instead of using “that money to provide money for early education for young children who… come from disadvantaged circumstances.”

But Ocasio-Cortez and others argued there is no reason the wealthiest nation on the planet can’t both fund early childhood education and forgive some of the combined $1.8 trillion in student loan debt saddling more than 40 million Americans.

“Nowhere does it say we must trade-off early childhood education for student loan forgiveness,” Ocasio-Cortez tweeted late Tuesday. “We can have both.”

The New York Democrat also rejected the notion that attendees of Harvard, Yale, and other elite universities should categorically be denied student loan relief, noting that many people from working-class families attended such prestigious schools and are now saddled with debt due to their inability to afford the sky-high costs.

“Who cares what school someone went to? Entire generations of working-class kids were encouraged to go into more debt under the guise of elitism. This is wrong,” Ocasio-Cortez said. “The case against student loan forgiveness is looking shakier by the day… Biden’s holding back, but many of the arguments against it just don’t hold water on close inspection. We can and should do it. Keep pushing!”

In lieu of canceling $50,000 in student loan debt per borrower—a proposal backed by Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.), Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), and other prominent Democratic lawmakers—Biden said he is “prepared to write off” $10,000 a person, make community college free, and eliminate state school tuition for students whose families earn less than $125,000 a year.

While Biden presented his higher-education proposals as sensible and pragmatic alternatives …read more

Source: ALTERNET

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Rick Perry makes stunning claim that dangerous Texas blackouts are worth it to avoid regulation

February 17, 2021 in Blogs

By Alex Henderson

With Texas being slammed by a combination of severe winter weather and power blackouts, Gov. Greg Abbott and Fox News’ Tucker Carlson are blaming green energy for the blackouts — while Democrats have stressed that most of Texas’ energy isn’t green and blamed the deregulation of the state’s energy system. Former Texas Gov. Rick Perry is weighing in as well, saying, in essence, that temporarily losing electricity is worth it if keeps the federal government away from Texas’ energy needs.

“Those watching on the left may see the situation in Texas as an opportunity to expand their top-down, radical proposals,” Perry said in a post on House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy’s site. “Texans would be without electricity for longer than three days to keep the federal government out of their business. Try not to let whatever the crisis of the day is take your eye off of having a resilient grid that keeps America safe personally, economically, and strategically.”

The Houston Chronicle previously reported on the comments.

In Texas, the energy grid is operated by the Electric Reliability Council of Texas. Republican politicians in Texas, including Perry and Abbott, have bragged out the deregulation of Texas’ energy market — insisting that it is a good thing that power companies themselves rather than government regulators can determine the ways in which power plants are built and maintained in the Lone Star State. But according to Houston Chronicle reporter James Osborne, “That system has fallen under scrutiny in recent days as millions of Texans are left without power following an unusual cold snap. Following a near identical episode a decade ago, federal regulators warned Texas it needed to take steps to better insulate its power plants.”

Like Abbott and Carlson, Perry is blaming green energy for Texas’ energy woes — never mind the fact that only a small part of Texas’ energy comes from wind turbines.

“If wind and solar is where we’re headed, the last 48 hours ought to give everybody a real pause and go wait a minute. We need to have a baseload,” he said. “And the only way you can get a baseload in this country is (with) natural gas, coal and nuclear.”

But Osborne explains: “That argument has been made by numerous conservatives in the midst of the blackouts. But it does not line up with early reports indicating the majority of the lost generation was natural …read more

Source: ALTERNET

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'He tried to humiliate me': Gov. Cuomo allegedly threatened to 'destroy' a lawmaker

February 17, 2021 in Blogs

By Alex Henderson

In New York State, Gov. Andrew Cuomo has been drawing widespread criticism — even within his own party — over reports that his administration covered up the full severity of deaths in nursing homes during the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020. And Democratic New York Assemblyman Ron Kim, CNN reports, is alleging that Cuomo threatened to “destroy” him if he didn’t cover up for the governor’s chief of staff and adviser, Melissa DeRosa.

DeRosa sparked outrage at the Cuomo administration after admitting in a private conversation that they held back information about nursing home deaths for fear of federal scrutiny.

Kim, who represents Queens, told CNN, “Gov. Cuomo called me directly on Thursday to threaten my career if I did not cover up for Melissa…. He tried to pressure me to issue a statement, and it was a very traumatizing experience.” Cuomo, Kim alleges, told him that “‘ we’re in this business together, and we don’t cross certain lines’ — and he said I hadn’t seen his wrath, and that he can destroy me.”

DeRosa, however, has denied that Cuomo made such a threat.

CNN reporters M.J. Lee and Mark Morales report, “DeRosa is a top aide to the governor who came under fire last week after she told state lawmakers, in a private virtual meeting, that the state had delayed sharing with the legislature the full scope of the COVID-related death toll of New York’s nursing home residents because of concerns about a potential federal investigation by the Department of Justice.”

Kim, discussing his phone conversation with Gov. Cuomo — who is the brother CNN’s Chris Cuomo and a son of the late New York Gov. Mario Cuomo — told CNN, “No man has ever spoken to me like that in my entire life. At some point, he tried to humiliate me, asking: ‘Are you a lawyer? I didn’t think so. You’re not a lawyer.’ It almost felt like in retrospect, he was trying to bait me and anger me (to) say something inappropriate. I’m glad I didn’t.”

In response to Lee and Morales’ reporting, civil rights attorney Joel Wertheimer — who served as Cuomo’s staff secretary after formerly serving in the Obama White House — tweeted: