Solarbird (solarbird) wrote,

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good morning, it's 5 may 2017

The big news is already well known, so I'm skipping it. The key item here is, "Every Republican who voted for this abomination must be held accountable." The backlash starts today.

If you're wondering "Why Trump's Executive Order on Religious Liberty Left Many Conservatives Dissatisfied," this article brushes up against it, but the real summary is that it does fuck and all, and they know it. A few of the bigger suckups are trying to make something out of it, but there's literally nothing there. Thankfully. But a prior executive order did do some damage, specifically to pregnant women, transgendered people, and a few others, and that's discussed in "The Terrifying Part of the ACA Repeal That’s Already Affecting Trans and Pregnant People."

This isn't 1957: "A Principal Is Accused of Being a Communist, Rattling a Brooklyn School." For - you got it - anti-racism activities. Nice, huh? Also, "A Code Pink Protester Laughs Over a Trump Nominee and Is Convicted." There are two links in that story, one to the Huffington Post talking to anonymous members of the jury. They didn't want to convict her, but felt they had no choice; somebody needs some lessons in jury nullification. That shit goes both ways.

And finally, "Reporter says Fox News fired her for using harassment hotline." It's a new lawsuit. There can't be enough.

Good luck out there.

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Every Republican who voted for this abomination must be held accountable
By Paul Waldman | The Washington Post | May 4, 2017

Here at the Plum Line, we write a lot about the mechanics of politics — the processes of governing, the interplay of political forces, the back-and-forth between citizens and lawmakers, and so on. We do that because it’s interesting and because it winds up affecting all our lives. But there are moments when you have to set aside the mechanics and focus intently on the substance of what government does — or in this case, what government is trying to do.

I won’t mince words. The health-care bill that the House of Representatives passed this afternoon, in an incredibly narrow 217-to-213 vote, is not just wrong, or misguided, or problematic or foolish. It is an abomination. If there has been a piece of legislation in our lifetimes that boiled over with as much malice and indifference to human suffering, I can’t recall what it might have been. And every member of the House who voted for it must be held accountable.

----- 2 -----
Why Trump's Executive Order on Religious Liberty Left Many Conservatives Dissatisfied
The president has won support from some high-profile evangelicals, but the move fell well short of expectations for many activists.
Emma Green | 4 May 2017 | The Atlantic

[Short form: it does virtually nothing. Even the ACLU isn't going to bother suing unless they see it being used for something. FFRF is suing but on an intent basis: that the _intent_ is discriminatory, even if the actions literally accomplish nothing. See also: ]

President Trump signed an executive order “promoting free speech and religious liberty” on Thursday. The final version of the order addresses two issues. First, it instructs the Internal Revenue Service to “exercise maximum enforcement discretion” in cases of pastors and other religious leaders speaking about political candidates from the pulpit, which is currently outlawed by a provision typically referred to as the Johnson Amendment. ““We are giving churches their voices back,” Trump said. Second, it provides “regulatory relief” to religious organizations that object to a provision of the Affordable Care Act that requires most employers to cover contraception in employee insurance plans.

The order directs the government “to vigorously enforce Federal law’s robust protections for religious freedom.” It’s a first step toward fulfilling Trump’s campaign promises to social conservatives, but the order is much less aggressive than many religious-liberty advocates had hoped. In February, a supposed draft of an executive order on religious issues was leaked to The Nation. That version—reportedly written by a staffer with the D.C. office of the First Liberty Institute, a Texas law firm that focuses on First Amendment issues—contained provisions designed to protect religious organizations and individuals who speak out against same-sex marriage, transgender identity, and pre-marital sex. It was a menu of sorts, a list of possible issues Trump could address from the Oval Office early in his tenure as president. While Trump has earned the support of a number of high-profile religious conservatives, others are deeply unhappy with the president’s first big move on what they see as religious-liberty issues.

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The Terrifying Part of the ACA Repeal That’s Already Affecting Trans and Pregnant People
Posted by Priya on May 4, 2017 | Autostraddle

Continuing his crusade against treating all human beings like human beings, Trump is currently targeting the rights of transgender people and pregnant people. The administration plans to roll back sweeping federal nondiscrimination provisions enacted under the Affordable Care Act (ACA) that protect transgender people and pregnant people.

Everything happening today is overwhelming, but let’s hold one another and try to understand the many layers of what’s going on and what the implications are.


There’s one more thing, though. On Tuesday, the Department of Justice filed a remand and stay regarding “will pause ongoing litigation in a conservative Texas federal district court that had temporarily blocked the Section 1557 regulations and send the regulations back to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) — presumably to gut them. DOJ officials in March decided not to challenge District Court Judge Reed O’Connor’s injunction, which will remain in place while the regulations are remanded back to HHS.”

According to the Health & Human Services website, “Section 1557 makes it unlawful for any health care provider that receives funding from the Federal government to refuse to treat an individual – or to otherwise discriminate against the individual – based on race, color, national origin, sex, age or disability. Section 1557 imposes similar requirements on health insurance issuers that receive federal financial assistance.”

According to Rewire, “that means even religious and religiously affiliated providers that accept money from the federal government can’t deny patients health care or health coverage. If they do, Section 1557 provides a legal vehicle to sue for, say, people seeking sterilization, those seeking abortion care, or transgender patients seeking any health-care services.”

----- 4 -----
A Principal Is Accused of Being a Communist, Rattling a Brooklyn School
By NIKOLE HANNAH-JONES | May 4, 2017 | The New York Times

It was early March when a representative from the New York City Department of Education’s Office of Special Investigations sat down with Jill Bloomberg, the longtime principal of Park Slope Collegiate in Brooklyn, a combined middle and high school, to inform her that she was under investigation.

The representative told Ms. Bloomberg that she could not tell her the nature of any allegations, nor who had made them, but said that she would need to interview Ms. Bloomberg’s staff.

Then one of her assistant principals, who had met with an investigator, revealed to her exactly what the allegation was, one that seemed a throwback to another era: Communist organizing.

“I think I just said, ‘You’ve got to be kidding me. This is something O.S.I. investigates?’” Ms. Bloomberg said, using an abbreviation for the Office of Special Investigations. “I mean, what decade are we living in?”

----- 5 -----
A Code Pink Protester Laughs Over a Trump Nominee and Is Convicted
By CHRISTOPHER MELE | The New York Times | MAY 3, 2017

[More details: ]

A jury on Wednesday convicted three Code Pink activists on charges related to a protest at the confirmation hearing of Jeff Sessions for attorney general — including a Virginia woman who said all she did was break out in laughter.

Each of the three protesters faces up to 12 months in jail, $2,000 in fines, or both, depending on the outcome of a June 21 sentencing hearing.

The woman with the laugh, Desiree A. Fairooz, 61, of Bluemont, Va., said she was undeterred. “We’ll face the music when we get to that,” she said.

A two-day trial in District of Columbia Superior Court in Washington ended on Tuesday. All three had pleaded not guilty, rejected a plea deal and demanded the trial.

In verdicts returned shortly after noon Wednesday, the jury also convicted two other activists in the group she was with, Tighe Barry and Lenny Bianchi, who were dressed as Ku Klux Klan members with white hoods and robes and stood up before the Jan. 10 hearing started.

----- 6 -----
Reporter says Fox News fired her for using harassment hotline
By Daniel Wiessner | 4 May 2017 | Reuters

A Fox News radio correspondent filed a lawsuit on Thursday claiming she was fired for complaining about sex discrimination, after the U.S. television network encouraged employees to report harassment amid a barrage of legal claims.

Jessica Golloher, who covers the Middle East and North Africa for Fox News Radio Network, says in the lawsuit that instead of addressing complaints, Fox is using the harassment hotline "to paint targets on the backs of employees."

In the lawsuit, filed in New York state court, Golloher says that in April she reported sex discrimination to a lawyer at the firm Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison, which Fox retained last year to conduct an internal probe of harassment complaints.

The next day, Golloher was told she would be laid off in August due to budgetary concerns, the complaint says.

"Terminating an employee within 24 hours of utilizing the 'hotline' ... is yet another indication of (Fox's) lack of oversight and retaliatory animus for those that are brave enough to report unlawful conduct," Golloher's lawyer, Douglas Wigdor, said in a statement.

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Tags: fascism watch, politics
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