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CWAA: Can We All Agree™ – 6/24/17 edition

June 24, 2017

Can we all agree, Republican senators who have voiced opposition to the new Senate health care plan, sound like they just want something in exchange for their votes?

Can we all agree, Senator McConnell’s plan  has nothing to do with what might be best for Americans but everything to do with politics?

Can we all agree taking money from poor people, who don’t vote, and giving it to rich people who do, is not what we should be doing?

The damage to the USS Fitzgerald, where 7 sailors died. (AP photo)

The damage to the USS Fitzgerald, where 7 sailors died. (AP photo)

Can we all agree, it’s unbelievable that a week after the collision of a Navy destroyer and a cargo ship cost the lives of 7 sailors, we still have no rational explanation of why it happened?

Can we all agree, the Obama administration’s handling of the Russian attacks on our electoral  system, shows that the former President’s trademark caution was a liability?

Can we all agree, by prohibiting video or audio recordings of the daily press briefings  the administration has managed to create the impression they are actually running a functioning government? Nice try.

Can we all agree, if California adds  many more jurisdictions to the list of states whose policies we don’t like, Golden State public servants may not be attending any out-of-state conventions?

Can we all agree, most other administrations would object to calls from foreign governments trying to close down a news outlet, but Mr. Trump’s silence is pretty deafening?

Can we all agree, Mr. Trump has once again revealed himself as nothing more than a schoolyard  bully when he claimed to have tapes of his meetings with former FBI Director James Comey?

Can we all agree, threats to fire Special Counsel Robert Mueller fall in the same category?

Can we all agree, as long as the drip, drip, drip of Russia related headlines continues, Mr. Trump will not be able to move ahead with the rest of his political agenda?

Can we all agree, the American public deserves to know which state election systems were attacked by Russian hackers?

Can we all agree, Attorney General Jeff Session’s decision to hire a private attorney, doesn’t help?

Can we all agree, now that grizzly bears outside of national parks, are being delisted as endangered species, it won’t be long before one of the Trump sons makes headlines for shooting one?

Can we all agree, Democrats, who failed to capitalize on Anti-Trump sentiment in a Georgia election this week, have a lot of work to do if they want to take back the House in 2018?

Can we all agree, their first step might be to get minority leader Nancy Pelosi to step down?

Can we all agree, it’s hard to know what a ‘shake up’ in a totalitarian government, such as Saudi Arabia, really means?

Can we all agree, The Environmental Protection Agency, is no longer an agency that we can count on to protect the environment?

Can we all agree, Energy Secretary Rick Perry, proves every day that he is unqualified for the job he holds?

Can we all agree, the qualifications of the latest round of nominees for federal posts are simply embarrassing? And it doesn’t look like the talent pool will get any deeper, just ask the folks in New York where a wedding planner now heads the housing office.

Can we all agree, we are heading for large scale wars in Syria and Afghanistan?

Can we all agree, Mr. Trump’s housing policy, which seems to involve cutbacks in everything except programs that benefit him, is pretty transparent?

Can we all agree, the Supreme Court’s decision to hear a case on political gerrymandering of congressional districts, may have more significance than anything Congress does in the next year?

Can we all agree, offensive trademarks may be protected as free speech, but they have no place in a civilized society?

Can we all agree, the award for the most awkward moment of the week has to go to Marco Rubio and Ivanka Trump?

Can we all agree, the high school principal who tried to shut down a critical speech by the class valedictorian, probably wishes he hadn’t?

Can we all agree, the forced resignation of Uber CEO Travis Kalanick should be a lesson for every new CEO trying too disrupt the status quo – there are still rules?

Can we all agree, we can hope that Mr. Trump will run out of friendly places to campaign, but Johnny Depp’s suggestion that the President should be assassinated, just invigorates Mr. Trump’s base?

and finally:

American food icon Alice Waters on what the Whole Foods purchase by Amazon could mean for the US food supply.

 

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CWAA: Can We All Agree – 12/3/16 edition

December 3, 2016

Can we all agree the 178,000 jobs created last month proves, once again, that the economy created by Mr. Obama is the strongest in the world?

Can we all agree, most Americans have been too preoccupied to notice the troubles brewing in France and Italy?

World chess champion, Magnus Carlsen (Getty Images)

World chess champion, Magnus Carlsen (Getty Images)

Can we all agree it’s great to have a rock-star chess champion?

Can we all agree Vladimir Putin is already trying to take advantage of the change in US leadership?

Can we all agree we hope Howard Schultz made a better choice for his replacement this time, than he did when he retired from his post at Starbucks a few years ago?

Can we all agree the Colombian government did the right thing in quickly approving a new peace agreement with FARC rebels?

Can we all agree OPEC will have to cut production a lot more than 4% if they really want to impact oil prices? The fact that they got Russia to agree to cut output is significant.

Can we all agree the re-election of Rep. Nancy Pelosi to her role as House Minority leader is a win for  Democratic Party unity, but also a win for the GOP?

Can we all agree The Princess Cruise Lines and their parent, Carnival, deserve more than a fine for polluting the oceans they travel and then lying about it?

Can we all agree, that despite the cost ($108Billion), tying student loan repayment to income is the right way to help graduates manage their loans?

Can we all agree Mr. Obama’s strategy of trying to finalize as many rules as possible before he leaves office might help slow the reversals everyone knows are coming?

Can we all agree James Deligatti should be saluted for his contribution to McDonald’s bottom line, but nutritionists everywhere hold him at least partially responsible for the world’s obesity epidemic? Second place might go to the inventor of General Tso’s chicken.

Can we all agree the Dakota pipeline protest does not look like it will end well for the protestors?

Can we all agree Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau might have been a bit off base in his rosy assessment of Fidel Castro’s contributions to Cuban education and health care?

OK, now on to Mr. Trump:

Can we all agree Donald Trump gets more credit for saving 700 jobs (at a cost of $7 million) than Mr. Obama does for creating 178,000?

Can we all agree that, based on his phone calls to the leaders in Pakistan and now Taiwan, Donald Trump has no idea what diplomacy is all about?imrs-php

Can we all agree the list of possible conflicts of interest with the Trump presidency, in both real estate and stocks, are almost too long to list?

Can we all agree the silence from the GOP leaders on the obvious conflicts is deafening?

Can we all agree we will have a cabinet of Goldman Sachs, by Goldman Sachs and for Goldman Sachs?

Can we all agree it’s mind boggling that a man who was unfit to be a federal judge will now be attorney general?

Can we all agree it’s still an open question on whether the deal with Carrier actually saved any jobs, although it’s clear the company made $7 million?

Can we all agree, nominating someone who is legally unable to take the post of defense secretary is the definition of hubris?

Can we all agree the clash between the Clinton and Trump campaigns is a microcosm of conversations going on across the nation? Well, maybe a bit more heated…

Can we all agree that a cabinet with 4 billionaires, 3 millionaires and the wife of the Senate majority leader, doesn’t sound like a blue-collar administration that will ‘drain the swamp’?

Can we all agree everyone is trying to figure out which campaign promises Trump will actually keep?

Can we all agree, it’s a bit mystifying that Trump would try to stop the recounts in Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin?

Can we all agree a twitter Presidency is one thing, a lying President is another, but a lying-tweeting President is an entirely new animal?

Can we all agree, at least all of us in California, are proud that our state university system has stepped up to oppose Trump and help protect students who may face deportation?

Can we ll agree, given the  backlog in immigration courts, adding an additional 3 million cases could delay any deporations until 2020 anyway?

and finally:

Take a look at the secret life of bees.

and ultimately, a story of hope, from the Boston Globe.

 

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CWAA: Can We All Agree – 11/19/16 edition

November 19, 2016

Happy anniversary to my lovely wife.

Can we all agree the actors at ‘Hamilton’ who lectured VP-Elect Mike Pence at last night’s performance, spoke for many of us?

Can we all agree Donald Trump will be asking for a lot of apologies over the next 4 years, if he can’t take the criticism?

Can we all agree, the only reason Mr. Trump settled his fraud case was because, even he realized that a president-elect testifying would be an embarrassment?

Can we all agree that the least Paul Ryan can do, as he campaigns to eliminate medicare, would be to tell the truth?

President Obama says his last good-byes.

President Obama says his last good-byes.

Can we all agree that the GOP will have no excuses if the economy tanks over the next four years?

Can we all agree that the cabinet appointments Mr. Trump has announced do nothing to quell the fears of most Democrats?

Can we all agree Mr. Trump’s meeting with Mitt Romney, is just for show?

Can we all agree that Mr. Trump’s election has already made the racist segment of the population more aggressive?

Can we all agree that using the WWII Japanese internment as a rationale for ‘registering’ Muslims is just offensive?

Can we all agree, no one is shocked that Mr. Trump sees no problem in putting relatives is key positions or allowing his family to profit from his position?

Can we all agree, it won’t be long before Mr. Trump gets in serious trouble with his twitter account?

Can we all agree, the press and GOP are working overtime to avoid labeling Steve Bannon what he is – a racist? Using the term alt-right or noting that he didn’t write the pieces on Brietbart – he just published them – just masks his real intention.

Can we all agree this pretty much sums up what Hillary is thinking?

Can we all agree Mr. Trump loves to see headlines noting that no-one knows what he is going to do?

Can we all agree Mr. Obama is trying to put on a brave face as he attempts to make sure his entire legacy will not be undone?

Can we all agree it’s not the first Supreme Court appointment that will be important, but the next three? – which Mr. Trump may make.

Can we all agree, the Democrats might be on to something, by trying to work with Trump, since it’s a good bet the divided GOP probably will not agree on much?

Can we all agree the Democrats need new leadership in the House?

Can we all agree Mr. Trump does not have a clue about how to conduct a cohesive foreign policy? – or a cohesive national policy, for that matter.t11-15-16-0001

Can we all agree that Mr. Putin probably can’t contain his enthusiasm now that Mr. Trump has been elected? Over the next four years he will retake Ukraine and the Baltic states.

Can we all agree the number of lobbyists in the Trump administration may break all records?

Can we all agree Mr. Trump’s appearance on 60 Minutes did little to clarify anything?

But enough about Trump.

Can we all agree United Airlines has reached new depths with their latest proposal for budget airfares?

Can we all agree that fakes news will always be a problem on the internet – that’s why they invented editors?

Can we all agree the Chinese bird that looks like Mr. Trump is pretty funny?

Can we all agree that cell phone apps are playing a major role in the increase in traffic fatalities?

Can we all agree it’s about time we had a museum of women’s history?

Can we all agree we’d be surprised if Mr. Zimmerman did accept his Nobel prize in person?

Can we all agree $850,000 is a small price to pay for the Ten Commandments?

Can we all agree the more research is done, the clearer the connection becomes between fracking and earthquakes?

and finally:

Can we all agree Steven Hawking is being optimistic when he says we have 1,000 years to find a new planet to colonize?

 

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Can We All Agree – 10/3/15 edition

October 3, 2015

Can we all agree The President is correct – mass shootings in the US have become too routine?

Can we all agree that we lost any chance of changing gun laws when we watched 26 children and teachers be slain in Newtown, CT and did nothing?Capture12

Can we all agree that we would like our President to give Michael Douglas’s speech from “An American President?”

Can we all agree that Jeb Bush has once again put his foot in his mouth by explaining the Oregon shooting as “stuff happens.”

Can we all agree that while 140,000 jobs created in a month, may not be what some people expected, it’s better than losing jobs, and shows the economy is still on track?

Can we all agree that Vladimir Putin knows that as long as The West does not have a unified voice, he can pretty much do whatever he wants in Ukraine, Syria or anywhere else in the world?

Can we all agree it’s tough to attribute the bombing of a hospital in the Afghan city of Kunduz to the ‘fog of war.’

Can we all agree that the GOP can rail  about Mr. Obama’s response to Mr. Putin, but they don’t have any credible ideas?

Can we all agree that we continue to be embarrassed by the comments of the GOP field?

Can we all agree that Speaker-to-be Kevin McCarthy looks like he will fit right in with the GOP? Can we all agree he has handed the upcoming Benghazi hearing to Hillary Clinton on a silver platter?

Can we all agree that it does not bode well that Nancy Pelosi and Mr. McCarthy are barely on speaking terms?

Can we all agree that Mr. McCarthy’s reputation for malapropisms will give late night talk show hosts plenty of material.

Stephen Colbert, right, with bandleader Jon Batiste, left, and guest John Legend on CBS' "The Late Show." (CBS)

Stephen Colbert, right, with bandleader Jon Batiste, left, and guest John Legend on CBS’ “The Late Show.” (CBS)

Can we all agree that, as my friend Jim Levy says, Steven Colbert may be the only grown-up on late night TV.

Can we all agree that it will be less than a month before we all long for the good old days of Speaker John Boehner?

Can we all agree that Planned Parenthood actually gained more support after its president testified before Congress?

Can we all agree that the new budget bill passed by Congress just puts off a government closure until 2 weeks before Christmas? Happy Holidays everyone!

Can we ll agree that Donald Trump’s ‘tax plan’ just exposed him for what he is – a fraud? That doesn’t mean I wouldn’t love to see him be the GOP nominee.

Can we all agree that Pope Francis needs to fire a few folks at the Vatican’s DC embassy for allowing Kim Davis to have even a group audience with him?

Can we all agree that the producers  of the movie ‘Martian,’ probably can’t believe their good fortune in the timing of news that there is evidence of water on Mars?

Can we all agree that despite Thursday’s deadline for the use of credit cards with electronic chips, there has been little change in how merchants handle credit cards in the US? Once again we are light years behind our European relatives.

Can we all agree that Sepp Blatter, head of FIFA, has redefined arrogance as he defies calls from his own sponsors to resign his post in the face of a criminal investigation?

Can we all agree that the NFL should be very worried as more and more students opt for soccer over football in high school?

Can we all agree that the talent exhibited by the winners of this years McArthur awards is remarkable?

Can we all agree that, for baseball fans, the best part of the season starts on Tuesday?

 

 

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Can We All Agree – 6/27/15 Edition

June 27, 2015

Can we all agree that President Obama may have just had the single best week any modern president ever had?

Can we all agree that The Supreme Court Ruling on the Affordable Care Act was perfect for everyone?

Can we all agree that it solidified a Democratic legacy and gave the GOP something to oppose with no political consequences?

Gay Pride at The White House

Gay Pride at The White House

Can we all agree that The Court’s approval of gay marriage had the same impact?

Can we all agree that Justice Antonin Scalia has officially gone off the rails in his dissents?

Can we all agree that the speed with which the GOP was able to reverse the vote on fast-track trade authority, really makes you wonder about congressional motives for the enormous waste of time on so many other matters?

Can we all agree that Rep. Nancy Pelosi was badly out-manuevered?

Can we all agree that a symbol, like the Confederate flag, can indeed incite violence?

Can we all agree that removing the Confederate flag or any references to it, may be the single biggest impact of the 9 deaths in South Carolina?

Can we all agree that the President’s speech on Friday in Charleston was among his most moving since he took office?

Can we all agree that he will not replace Taylor Swift atop The Billboard 100?

Can we all agree that musical artists of every stripe owe Ms Swift a huge debt for her stand against Apple’s initial royalty payment system?

Can we all agree it would be nice if she changed her policy for photographers who provide her with publicity?

Can we all agree that Dzhokhar Tsarnaev’s apology for the Boston Marathon  bombing was too little, and too late, even for those of us opposed to the death penalty?

Can we all agree that while the GOP Presidential race got another entrant, no-one even noticed the additional clown in the car?

Can we all agree that we are all losing interest in terrorist attacks around the world?

Carli Lloyd #10 of the United States celebrates as she heads the ball past goalkeeper Wang Fei #12 of China in the second half for her team's first goal in the FIFA Women's World Cup 2015 Quarter Final match at Lansdowne Stadium on June 26, 2015 in Ottawa, Canada. (Photo by Jana Chytilova/Freestyle Photo/Getty Images)

Carli Lloyd #10 of the United States celebrates as she heads the ball past goalkeeper Wang Fei #12 of China in the second half for her team’s first goal in the FIFA Women’s World Cup 2015 Quarter Final match yesterday. (Photo by Jana Chytilova/Freestyle Photo/Getty Images)

Can we all agree that when we lose interest, it’s probably just a matter of time before an attack hits closer to home?

Can we all agree that when the Greek Prime Minister calls for a referendum on a debt bailout, he’s not showing much leadership?

Can we all agree that the US Women’s Soccer Team’s victory over China to reach the World Cup semi-finals was pretty lopsided, even though the final score was only 1-0 ?

 

 

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