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#CWAA: Can We All Agree™ – 4/7/18 edition

April 7, 2018

Can we all agree, despite verbal support from Mr. Trump, it sure looks like EPA chief Scott Pruitt has made some powerful enemies, who want him fired from his post?

Can we all agree, Facebook can make some changes, but it will never be able to satisfy critics since it’s business plan is based on selling our personal data?

EPA chief Scott Pruitt, will he be pushed out next? (NYT photo)

EPA chief Scott Pruitt, will he be pushed out next? (NYT photo)

Can we all agree, China has the upper hand in any trade war with the US since they don’t have to worry about elections, public opinion  and a stock market crash?

Can we all agree, the trade war with China will hurt Trump voters the most?

Can we all agree, Sinclair Broadcasting’s insistence that ‘must run’ segments sent to their stations are ‘non-political,’ doesn’t pass the smell test?

Can we all agree, it doesn’t look like the GOP tax cuts will be giving the Republicans much of a boost as long as Mr. Trump’s approval rating remains at record lows?

Can we all agree, even Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker seems worried that a blue wave will sweep the country this November?

Can we all agree, putting the National Guard on the border with Mexico,  just underlines the fact that the immigration service cannot find enough people to patrol the border?

Can we all agree, bringing a loaded gun to a meeting with constituents is just asking for trouble, especially if you are a Congressman?

Can we all agree, it wasn’t a good week for former world leaders: ex-presidents in Brazil and South Korea are facing long jail sentences?

Can we all agree, Russian oligarchs sanctioned by the US have probably already figured out a way around the new regulations?

Can we all agree, even Trump supporters don’t believe that he didn’t know about the settlement his attorney set up with Stormy Daniels?

Can we all agree, anyone planning to visit a National Park should celebrate the government’s decision not to substantially increase entrance fees?

Can we all agree, after reading the terms of his settlements of the sexual harassment complaints, it’s pretty clear former Fox TV host Bill O’Reilly is just a disgusting human being?

Can we all agree, Kentucky taxpayers have every right to be upset that lawmakers hiked taxes on almost 95% of the state’s residents, but gave the richest 5% a tax break?

Can we all agree, Mr. Trump’s head-scratching reversal on Syria, is just one more example of the chaotic state of US foreign policy?

Can we all agree, supporting US businesses used to be the President’s job, but it appears no one told Mr. Trump?

Can we all agree, despite reports to the contrary, no one believes The President isn’t the main focus of Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation?

Can we all agree, imposing quotas on immigration judges, might speed up processing, but it will probably leave justice as roadkill?

Can we all agree, most of us would be pretty happy with an offer of a single college scholarship – getting 20 is pretty remarkable?

Can we all agree, inviting Vladimir Putin to the White House,  while you are being investigated for colluding with the Russians, defies all political logic?

Can we all agree, there will be more teacher walkouts across the country?

 

and finally:

How the SF Ballet gave one young girl from Puerto Rico a chance to achieve her dreams.

I may not agree with Chris Christie on many things but he summed up my view of Scott Pruitt pretty well when he told ABC News: “I don’t know how you survive this one, and if he has to go, it’s because he never should have been there in the first place.”

 

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#CWAA: Can We All Agree™ – 3/24/18 edition

March 24, 2018

Can we all agree, today’s protests against gun violence in schools are already creating some change: the DOJ will ban bump stocks  the new budget bill allows research on gun violence and Citigroup is taking a stance on guns?

Can we all agree, when  President Trump threatened to veto (and then signed)  the last minute budget deal, it was just to keep the focus on him? He lost the battle – he really didn’t have any choice – Congress had left town.

'March for Our Lives' protestors in Washington DC, Saturday (NYT photo)

‘March for Our Lives’ protestors in Washington DC, Saturday (NYT photo)

Can we all agree, the Saudi Crown Prince get what he wanted in his visit to the US – positive PR and billions in new weapons?

Can we all agree, the administration’s efforts to curb nutritional labeling, as part of NAFTA negotiations, does not bode well for the continuing obesity epidemic in the US?

Can we all agree, the widening plastic garbage patch in the Pacific, should alarm us all, but since we don’t see it every day, or even while we’re 0n vacation in Hawaii, everyone ignores it?

Can we all agree, Mr. Trump’s ‘edict’ on transgender troops is so confusing it is really meaningless?

Can we all agree, anyone who is shocked that Facebook, whose business plan is based on selling personal information, was used by political campaigns, is just naive?

Can we all agree, anyone who thinks there will be substantive changes to the Facebook business model, is just fooling themselves? Even if you mange to delete your account.

Can we all agree, we will all get to judge, whether the driverless car was at fault in the fatal traffic accident in Arizona?

Can we all agree, the verbal war of words between Mr. Trump and Joe Biden would be hilarious, if they were just schoolyard antagonists, but, like everything else, it has no place in politics?

Can we all agree, we can try to ignore the latest staff changes at the White House, but the elevation of John Bolton, the architect of the war in Iraq, is truly frightening?

Can we all agree, Sacramento protestors, need to keep the pressure on police to explain how an unarmed man, carrying a cellphone, can be shot 20 times in bis own back yard?

Can we all agree, Mr. Trump’s trade war with China will turn out to be just a lot of hot air, just like his tariff’s on steel and aluminum?

Can we all agree, changing lawyers will not help Mr. Trump’s defense against Special Counsel Robert Mueller?

Can we all agree, aides might think the President was ignoring warnings not to congratulate Vladimir Putin, but they should know, he is incapable of reading anything in his briefing books?

Can we all agree, it’s unfortunate that the heroic action of a resource officer in a Maryland school, will now be politicized in our gun debate?

Can we all agree, we are all numb to new revelations of Trump trysts, but they make for great TV?

Can we all agree, it would be easy to discount another celebrity running for office, but we already made that mistake more than once?

Can we all agree, seeing Tiger Woods on a PGA leaderboard,will invigorate the sport – at least until he retires to the senior tour?

Can we all agree, Saturday Night Live remains must-see TV for political junkies?

Can we all agree, getting tough on drug dealers will not solve an opioid epidemic that starts in doctor’s offices?

Can we all agree, throwing your wife under the bus, to defend your poor judgement, like HUD Secretary Ben Carson did this week, is not the way to foster a great marriage?

Can we all agree, no  one can really figure out if Cambridge Analytics even knew what to do with all the data they stole from Facebook?

The Pacific garbage patch

The Pacific garbage patch

Can we all agree, even $10,000 travel vouchers , will not improve United Airlines image?

Can we all agree, the least we should expect from the White House are press releases without misspellings and typos? But I guess that’s too much to ask of this administration.

Can we all agree, The Pope seems to having a tough month, almost as bad as the former president of Peru?

Can we all agree, the 2018 campaign for Congress has not even hit full steam and the 2020 campaign for President has already started in New Hampshire?

and finally:

If you are over 40, IBM is no longer the right place for you.

 

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CWAA: Can We All Agree™ – 8/12/17 edition

August 12, 2017

Can we all agree, many of us never thought the Chinese president would be the grownup in the room, refereeing the war of words between a US President and the leader of North Korea?

Can we all agree, it’s tough to predict an outcome when you have two egomaniacal bullies hurling insults at each other?

Can we all agree the folks on Guam probably are not comforted by Mr. Trump’s promise of retaliation, if the island is attacked?

We all make mistakes, but Can we all agree we'd like to think this was on purpose.

We all make mistakes, but Can we all agree we’d like to think this headline  was printed  on purpose.

Can we all agree, most of us have been so preoccupied with North Korea we hardly noticed that, despite the billions of dollars spent after Katrina, New Orleans flooded again this week after a severe thunderstorm?

Can we all agree, the longer we ignore climate change reports, the more stories like New Orleans, we will see?

Can we all agree, sometime in the next year the EPA will effectively cease to exist?

Can we all agree, while we should be concerned about what’s happening in Venezuela,  we can’t invade every country, where we disagree with the government’s policies?

Can we all agree, the White House may not openly condone the activities of the alt-right, but the fact that an administration aide can pen a memo describing a leftist conspiracy, certainly provides support?

Can we all agree, Google made a bad situation worse this week, when they fired the author of a memo attacking women working in Silicon Valley? We may not agree with his comments, but he has every right to his opinion.

Can we all agree, it’s hard to tell if sports reporters are over-reacting to the cancellation of some  high school football programs, or if we are really seeing the start of a death spiral?

Can we all agree, Major League Baseball deserves a pat on the back for their ‘nickname’ promotion later this month? Don’t expect to see anything like this in the NFL.

Can we all agree, it’s about time the highest levels of government admitted that we have an opioid crises in this country?

Can we all agree, the new twitter battle between Senate President Mitch McConnell and Mr. Trump, will do little to advance the GOP agenda?

Can we all agree, the FBI’s pre-dawn raid of former Trump campaign chief Paul Manafort, is very bad news for the President?

Can we all agree, despite all the rhetoric, it appears, the XL pipeline may be stymied by state regulations in Nebraska?

Can we all agree, state politicians, like those in Wisconsin, don’t care how much tax money they give away, as long as they can say they brought in new jobs?

Can we all agree, President Trump should take a close look at what’s happening to his good friend Benjamin Netanyahu, as he tries to downplay the special counsel’s investigation?

Can we all agree, Disney may be making the right business decision, by taking their movies off Netflix, but they are making it  more difficult for the consumer?

Can we all agree, we should be very concerned that industry lobbyists are re-writing the nation’s regulatory framework?

Can we all agree, it’s been another tough trip home for many GOP politicians?

Can we all agree, coal mining should not be encouraged on public land?

Can we all agree, Vice President Mike Pence is running for his boss’s job? He just doesn’t like to have it made public.

Barbara Cook

Barbara Cook

Can we all agree, voting for Amy McGrath over Mitch McConnell is a pretty easy decision?

Can we all agree, the Democrat’s shift to the left will not help them in conservative states, even where voters are appalled by Donald Trump?

Can we all agree, it appears the only world leader Mr. Trump does not stand up to, is Vladimir Putin?

Glen Campbell

Glen Campbell

Can we all agree, White House aides should not be making news at speaking engagements? If they can’t take the criticism, they should not have agreed to appear.

Can we all agree, the world is just a little less  lyrical this week with the passing of Glen Campbell and Broadway singer Barbara Cook.

and finally:

Only in America could Back to School shopping get combined with guns sales.

 

 

 

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CWAA: Can We All Agree™ – 7/22/17 edition

July 22, 2017

Can we all agree, promising Presidential pardons before charges are filed, only serves to convince people that Mr. Trump knows that he, his relatives and their associates have committed crimes?

Can we all agree, the same could be said for reports from his legal team, that their legal case will be built on trying to undermine Robert Mueller’s credibility?

Can we all agree, someone in a position of power really wants to get rid of Attorney General Jeff Sessions – unless you think reports from secret intelligence cables are available freely from Washington newsstands?

A detailed look at the President's threat to fire Special Counsel Robert Mueller (Washington Post)

A detailed look at the President’s threat to fire Special Counsel Robert Mueller (Washington Post)

Can we all agree, it is unconscionable that a week after an Australian woman who called 911, was shot to death by police we still have no information on how the tragedy happened.

Can we all agree, Sean Spicer’s resignation is not the last high-level change coming at the White House?

Can we all agree, we will miss Melissa McCarthy’s Spicer impersonations on SNL?

Can we all agree, the real impact of Mr. Trump’s visit to Poland was his unofficial encouragement to the right-wing government?

Can we all agree, it’s hard to believe the secret life of the former head of the USC medical school, was unknown to the school’s administration?

Can we all agree, no one seems to know what will happen next week when the Senate votes on an unknown healthcare plan?

Can we all agree, the President fails to understand that no one – ‘not even congressional pages’ – are afraid of his threats?

Can we all agree, the real question for the GOP is will they let the healthcare markets collapse and risk taking heat from voters who would lose their insurance coverage?

Can we all agree, the Senate’s attempt to repeal the ACA got harder yesterday when their parliamentarian ruled against several key provisions on the bill?

Can we all agree, the record low ratings for Mr. Trump, may have something to do with his inability to get congress to bend to his will?

Can we all agree, Jared Kushner might as well resign now since he has lost all credibility with both his boss and the American people?

Can we all agree, it’s probably not conducive to good government when two federal agencies sue each other?

Can we all agree, it’s not surprising that former Trump campaign chief owed money to Russian banks, since many Americans believe Mr. Trump’s taxes will show that he owed even more?

Can we all agree, the high level voter-fraud panel, investigating non-existant voter fraud, is grasping at straws as it seeks more personal data on Americans, so the panel can make it harder to vote?

Can we all agree, even those who disagreed with Senator John McCain, were saddened by news that he has a brain tumor? At times he seemed to be one of the few sane voices in the Senate.

Can we all agree, in hindsight, it was pretty clear that the Supreme Court, with an average age of 68, would come down on the side of grandparents being excluded from the administration’s Muslim travel ban?

Can we all agree, it really doesn’t matter how many meetings Mr. Putin and Mr. Trump have had recently, their bromance has been going on for years?

Can we all agree, the Putin-Trump relationship has tainted virtually any decision that might have an impact on Russia?

Can we all agree, the big news of the week was the firing of the long-time voice of Kermit the frog?

Can we all agree, the public barely noticed when the administration turned its back on two more campaign promises this week, certifying Iranian compliance with the nuclear agreement and bringing terrorists to the US to face charges?

Can we all agree, each week seems to bring new and novel ways for the administration’s cabinet secretaries to deny climate change and global warming?

Can we all agree, the reaction to O.J. Simpson’s parole, suggests the country just doesn’t care about a crime committed over 20 years ago?

Can we all agree, the White House ‘Made in America’ campaign this week  underscored the fact that the President and his daughter have their signature products made out of the country?

Can we all agree, it’s tough to feel any sympathy for Ann Coulter in her battle with Delta Airlines?

and:

The only good news this week was a story about Israeli soldiers providing assistance to Syrian refugees. There must be other better news, but it was tough to find.

 

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CWAA: Can We All Agree™ – 7/8/17 edition

July 8, 2017

Can we all agree, as long as Mr. Trump and Mr. Putin release their claims of what they discussed through biased mouthpieces we should be skeptical of anything they say?

Can we all agree it’s hard to believe Mr. Trump pressed Mr. Putin very hard on election tampering, one day after claiming he still wasn’t sure the Russians hacked our election system?

A friend recently published her photos of the Milky Way. (Photo by Annie Lu)

A friend recently published her photos of the Milky Way. (Photo by Annie Lu)

Can we all agree, there is no denying Mr. Trump’s policies are leaving the US on the sidelines of global trade and  isolated on most major issues?

Can we all agree, the robust jobs report may have very little to do with Trump’s economic policies, since no one is sure what they are ?

Can we all agree the slowdown in auto sales, and the resulting loss of jobs, may be  tough for the White House to explain?

Can we all agree, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell seems ready to admit defeat on repealing the Affordable Care Act, although the White House seems to be preparing one last push?

Can we all agree, any cease fire is good news, but we’ve been down this road many times in Syria?

Can we all agree, the GOP seems to having problems dealing with social media? First their attack on Hillary Clinton backfires and then the Indiana GOP asks for Obamacare horror stories and is flooded with positive comments.

Can we all agree, the departure of the head of the federal ethics office is a sad day for all of us, since  it will allow the White House to appoint someone who ignores their nonexistent ethics?

Can we all agree, the two year delay in approving an Illinois budget should be a warning to the GOP – if they ever get around to voting on an increase to the federal debt ceiling?

Can we all agree, the revelations about the ‘successful’ interception of a test missile aimed at California, will not make  West Coast residents sleep any easier

Can we all agree, Mr. Trump’s latest bizarre tweet has to worry even his most ardent supporters?

Can we all agree, it’s hard to believe, he could top his retweet of a doctored video showing him wrestling with a CNN logo?

Can we all agree, if the GOP has lost a solid red state. such as Kansas, they really should rethink their attempts to repeal Obamacare?

Can we all agree, California Governor Jerry Brown really seems to like his new role as ‘Democratic President of the United States.’

Can we all agree, the move to all electric cars may happen faster than anyone expected as France and Volvo jumped on the Tesla technology bandwagon?

Can we all agree, The Presidential voting commission needs to be dissolved  now that 44 states have turned down their request for voter data?

Can we all agree, US oil producers don’t seem to understand that the more they sell the lower the price will be and the sooner the oil boom will turn into a bust?

Can we all agree, Mr. Trump’s portrayal, in Poland, of the war against ISIS, as a battle against all Muslims, is counter-productive and needlessly raises the stature of that terrorist organization?

Can we all agree, Louisiana Congressman Clay Higgins’ use of a Nazi gas chamber as a backdrop for a campaign ad, has left everyone speechless?

Can we all agree, United Airlines just doesn’t seem to understand that customer service and common sense, need to come before profits?

Can we all agree, no one seems to believe the White House story line that Obamacare is a failure?

Can we all agree, it does not appear that the July Fourth break was particularly pleasant for lawmakers supporting repeal of The Affordable Care Act?

Can we all agree, the recent headline noting that ‘self restraint’ is the only thing standing in the way of war with North Korea should make everyone from Barrow, Alaska, to San Diego, California very nervous?

Can we all agree, that, given the number of executives who have now been fired for sexual harassment, the corporate culture at Fox News must have been terrible for any woman who tried to make a career there?

Can we all agree, NJ Governor Chris Christie, photographed sunbathing this week on a beach closed by a budget impasse gives new meaning to the word chutzpah?

Can we all agree, it appears once again, that the only thing standing in the way of a complete climate meltdown in the US, may be the judicial system?

Can we all agree, it looks like the courts may have to be the last line of defense against Betsy Devoss and her Department of Education also?

and finally:

We should all pause to remember Ms Sheila Michaels.

and

A former member of Congress who now needs the ACA to survive.

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CWAA: Can We All Agree™ – 7/2/17 edition

July 2, 2017

A day late, but hopefully, not a pound short.

Can we all agree, we should all be nervous about the administration’s request for voter data from the states and appalled that they don’t seem to understand why state officials are declining the demand?

Can we all agree, as the nation’s fertility rate declines any rational person realizes we need to change our attitude toward immigration?

Can we all agree, the GOP’s latest failure to pass a health care reform bill has left many Americans in the worst possible position – unable to plan for the future?

Can we all agree it's hard to understand why these opponents of Mr. trump's health care plan would agree to this picture? (AP photo)

Can we all agree it’s hard to understand why these opponents of Mr. Trump’s health care plan would agree to this picture? (AP photo)

Can we all agree, Mr. Trump has not been any help to Mitch McConnell?

Can we all agree Mr. Trump’s about face on health care shows his desperation and makes passage even more remote?

Can we all agree most voters don’t really understand ‘CBO scores,’ and don’t really care since they know what the impact of the Republican bill would be?

Can we all agree, Mr. Trump’s needless fight with two cable TV commentators has revealed the alternative universe inside the White House?

Can we all agree, the National Rifle Association’s latest ad campaign should outrage every American as it incites violence, simply to encourage gun ownership?

Can we all agree, anyone who doesn’t think a grandparent  constitutes a ‘bona fide’ relationship should ask one?

Can we all agree, next week’s G-20 summit should be quite the show for Mr. Trump, Germany’s Angela Merkel and Russia’s Vladimir Putin?

Can we all agree, Mr. Trump is oblivious to the fact that most of the world is laughing at him?

Can we all agree, Hong Kong is at pivotal crossroads as it celebrates 20 years since the British relinquished control?

Can we all agree, each week EPA administrator Scott Pruitt is allowed to stay in office we get closer to environmental disaster?

Can we all agree, Paul Manafort never should have been allowed to run any political campaign?

Can we all agree, it’s not the  $2.7 billion fine from the EU that worries Google, but the threat to their business model?

Can we all agree, the NSA, needs to admit they have screwed up and start helping people combat the hacking tools the agency created?

Can we all agree, the newfound friendship between Mr. Trump and Indian Prime Minister Modi will only last as long as Mr. Modi bows to all Mr. Trump’s demands?

Can we all agree, Germany’s rejection of visas for the body-guards/thugs who wanted to accompany Turkey’s dictator on a state visit, suggest the criminal charges brought in the US may have an impact after all?

Can we all agree, the latest report on the rise in sea level caused by increased carbon emissions makes our government’s position on the environment increasingly absurd?

Can we all agree, Mr. Trump has created his own echo chamber to support his egomaniacal positions?

Can we all agree, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has become a non-entity on the world stage?

Can we all agree, Serena Williams had a near perfect return for John Mcenroe’s sexist serve?

Can we all agree, gun control supporters were left a bit confused this week as the Supreme Court allowed a California law on ammunition to stand but a lower court issued an injunction preventing the law from going into effect?

Can we all agree, no one is looking forward to stricter airport security rules ?

Can we all agree,  the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences should be congratulated for their bid to diversify their membership, even if it’s a few years late?

and finally:

A good news story about the heroic actions of a major league umpire.

and

An airline story that might restore your faith in the industry.

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CWAA: Can We All Agree™ – 6/3/17 edition

June 3, 2017

Can we all agree Donald Trump abandoned the Paris Climate Change Agreement when he appointed Scott Pruitt to head the EPA?

Can we all agree Vladimir Putin essentially admitted this week that Russians interfered in the US election?

Can we all agree the French President had a great comeback to Donald Trump?

The NY Daily News gets it right, again.

The NY Daily News gets it right, again.

Can we all agree, it’s clear Mr. Trump has no factual basis for his decision?

Can we all agree the countries, states and cities who know climate change is already here have just two words for Mr. Trump: Drop dead?

Can we all agree, Mr. Trump doesn’t seem to realize his base, which seems happy with climate change, only makes up about 30% of the electorate?

Can we all agree, it doesn’t really matter whether Mr. Trump believes in climate science? But it would be nice to know.

Can we all agree, it’s pretty clear,  Mr. Trump’s policies change depending on who he favors? This week it’s Steve Bannon, and not Jared Kushner.

Can we all agree if Joe Biden, at 76, decides to run in 2020, Trump (or Pence) is toast?

Can we all agree China is more than happy to see the United States make itself irrelevant and allow them to become the world leader in yet another category?

Can we all agree we seem to have hit full employment but it does;’t mean much for all the coal miners who still can’t find work?

Can we all agree it’s becoming clearer by the day that the Senate will not pass a healthcare bill any time soon?

Can we all agree if the spouse of a current employee won’t work for you, you might be the toxic workplace?

Can we all agree the GOP seems intent on hiding their own report on CIA torture?

Can we all agree it’s already pretty clear why the White House didn’t want to release their ethics waivers: the forms are a mess?

Can we all agree the term ‘ethics waivers’ seems pretty absurd for a White House with no ethics from day one?

Can we all agree someone needs to tell Devin Nunes, head of the House Intelligence Committee, that no one cares about any subpoenas he issues, because he has no credibility left?

Can we all agree the world may be distracted this week by climate change, and c0vfefe, but by next week, the probe of Russian interference in the US election will be back to center stage, despite Mr. Trump’s continuing claims that it’s all a hoax?

Can we all agree there was some good news on the environment this week when a California court ruled the state could force Monsanto to label products as carcinogens and Exxon-Mobil stockholders forced the energy giant to report on the impact they are having on climate change?

Can we all agree Ohio’s suit against the makers of opioids will have little impact unless others join in?

Can we all agree Mr. Trump doesn’t seem to realize how bad it looks when he tries to curry favor with the Russians by returning two compounds that were seized as punishment just six months ago?

Can we all agree if the government tries to roll back Mr. Obama’s Cuba policy he will be swimming against a very strong tide?

Can we all agree it takes a pretty small person to steal the belongings of a  dying man who tried to defend two women against the verbal abuse of a white supremicist?

Can we all agree the government faces an uphill battle trying to convince the Supreme Court that they are likely to win their case for the Mr. Trump’s immigration ban?

Can we all agree comedian Kathy Griffin gave Mr. Trump a huuuuuge present this week, by posing with a mask that appeared to be his severed head?

Can we all agree Congress has done a great job of hiding that fact that they have made a mockery of internet privacy?

Can we all agree the next financial showdown over the debt ceiling will  get here sooner than most politicians expected or wanted?

Can we all agree, say what you will about Texas legislators, they sure know how to embarrass themselves?

Can we all agree French President Emmanuel Macron is quickly becoming a force to be reckoned with on the world stage? Just ask Mr. Putin.

Can we all agree the only person who had a successful trip to the Middle East and Europe was Melania Trump? Yes, she of the $51,000 jacket.

Can we all agree the military’s successful test of an anti-missile system does not make me, or anyone else in the Bay Area,  feel any safer?

And finally:

RIP: Christian Deford’s dad, Frank, Shannon Allman’s husband, Gregg and Mika’s Brzezinski’s dad, Zbigniew ; giants in their fields.

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CWAA: Can We All Agree™ – 4/1/17 edition

April 1, 2017

Can we all agree, this Holocaust survivor in Sacramento, had the perfect retort to the head of the immigration service who was trying to defend the new immigration policies?

Can we all agree it’s remarkable, that we have an Attorney General who doesn’t seem to know federal law very well?

Can we all agree Mississippi State showed why we love college sports, when they upset The University of Connecticut, ending the team’s 111-game winning streak?

First rose of the season in my garden: Sombreuil

First rose of the season in my garden: Sombreuil

Can we all agree, there is no law against being rich, but the wealth, and lack of ethics in our new leadership team, puts to rest the notion that Donald Trump is draining any swamps in Washington?

Can we all agree the White House Press Secretary is desperately trying to divert attention from the Russian scandal that has now fully engulfed the White House?

Can we all agree, despite Senate promises of a full investigation of the White House ties to Russia, most Americans want a truly independent probe?

Can we all agree the startling rise in opioid deaths is a national health crises that needs to be addressed, before it becomes a ‘fact of life’ like the murder rate from guns?

Can we all agree it’s pretty clear the wrong person is running the Food and Drug Administration, when he has to recuse himself from decisions involving over 20 health care firms, because he has a conflict of interest?

Can we all agree Elon Musk’s reusable rocket technology is pretty remarkable?

Can we all agree, if news reports are to be believed, Rex Tillerson, our Secretary of State, seems lost, and that’s just what Mr. Trump wants?

Can we all agree, Mr. Trump’s trade policy seems to change direction like the wind? On the eve of the Chinese President’s visit to Mar A Lago, he’s threatening a trade war, while he backs off his campaign promise to rip up  NAFTA?

Can we all agree the Democrats are committed to making the appointment of Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court difficult, as retribution for Mitch McConnell’s handling of the Merrick Garland nomination?

Can we all agree Venezuela has descended into chaos? Too bad the refugees trying to escape will not be welcomed here.

Can we all agree the Russians protesting the dictatorship of Vladimir Putin have no chance of forcing any changes?

Can we all agree it’s tough to take the continuing California drought warnings too seriously with the Sierra snowpack at 167% of normal?

Can we all agree, no Bay Area resident would disagree with polls showing many millennials want to leave because of high costs and traffic congestion?

Can we all agree there is no reason why Michael Flynn should be given immunity from prosecution, especially since no one expects he would tell the truth anyway?

Can we all agree, it’s good to see the suit against Trump University might allow defrauded students to get back almost 90% of what they paid, but we were kind of rooting for the plaintiff who wanted more, including an apology from Mr. Trump?

Can we all agree the North Carolina Legislature seems to have fooled everyone into thinking they actually changed their bathroom law?

Can we all agree  California Rep. Devin Nunes was a willing dupe in the White House’s plan to plant evidence supporting Mr. Trump’s wiretapping claims?

Can we all agree Chelsea Clinton needs to get used to people who doubt her claims that she will not run for office, especially when she continues to make public political statements?

Can we all agree public opinion on the change in internet privacy restrictions is really a generational divide with Baby Boomers worried about their data and younger people assuming everything they do on line is public anyway?

Can we all agree, as the battle over the Affordable Care Act continues Health Secretary Thomas Price will slowly chip away at coverage, while more GOP governors seem to have realized the ACA might help residents in their states?

Can we all agree Mr. Trump’s attempts to threaten the Freedom Caucus for their failure to support health care reform, just shows his political inexperience? Even the Democrats are laughing.

Can we all agree that the prison sentences handed out to aides of New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie send a clear message to politicians everywhere (including the White House) about what the public finds acceptable?

Can we all agree, it makes no difference whether Ivanka Trump is paid or not, she should not be advising the President and running her company at the same time?

Can we all agree, it’s pretty funny seeing Mr. Trump using Bill Clinton’s defense trying to avoid a sexual assault lawsuit while he’s President?

Can we all agree, the thought of Mr. Trump throwing out the first pitch on Opening Day was too precious? Almost as fanciful as the thought of a second Trump hotel in Washington.

Can we all agree the women’s USA Hockey team struck a blow for equality this week?

Can we all agree, Maxine Waters and April Ryan did much the same in their own ways?

Can we all agree it doesn’t look like England’s exit from the EU will be as smooth as Theresa May had hoped?

Can we all agree Hong Kong has now officially lost it’s battle to remain a democracy?

Can we all agree that Mr. Trump’s moves to undo Mr. Obama’s clean air plan will do nothing to bring back coal jobs, do nothing to make America great again, give the rest of the world an excuse to follow suit and do nothing but allow our climate to change permanently?

and finally:

If you are really depressed about Alec Baldwin’s decision to cut back on his appearances on SNL, take a look at this compilation of the past year’s political sketches.

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CWAA: Can We All Agree ™- 3/25/17

March 25, 2017

Can we all agree Friday night’s Wisconsin-Florida basketball game may be this year’s March Madness signature moment?

Can we all agree Donald Trump can try to blame the Democrats, but everyone knows his own party is responsible for the death of his health care bill?

Can we all agree Mr. Trump doesn’t need a press secretary if he’s going to call reporters every time he wants to blame somebody?

Can we all agree you can always count on social media for the best commentary, although traditional media had some pithy comments?

Can we all agree most Americans thought the FBI Director’s testimony about a criminal investigation of the Trump campaign would be the major story of the week? How quickly things change with this administration.

Can we all agree the failure of the health care bill exposed the many rifts within the Republican Congress?

Can we all agree the State of California is looking forward to a showdown with the EPA over emission regulations?

Can we all agree Chicago Cubs President Theo Epstein has done an impressive job for two teams, but calling him the world’s best leader, is really an insult to many leaders who make more consequential decisions?

Can we all agree the US military is heading for a major PR disaster as more and more civilians are killed or injured by their bombs in Iraq?

Can we all agree the conviction of former Penn State President Graham Spanier will be a welcome end to the 5 year sex scandal at the university?

Can we all agree the actions of Rep. Devin Nunes have handed Democrats an iron-clad reason to seek a special prosecutor or select committee to investigate the Trump campaign’s links to the Russians?

Can we all agree the longer the investigation is delayed the longer the drip, drip, drip of Russian connections will haunt the White House?

Can we all agree Secretary of State Rex Tillerson did not help his boss by skipping the G-20 summit to visit Russia?

Can we all agree the number of Vladimir Putin’s critics who have died mysteriously runs counter to the Kremlin’s claims that they bear no responsibility?

Can we all agree the approval of the Keystone Pipeline project was a foregone conclusion once the Dakota Access Pipeline was approved?

Can we all agree it’s remarkable that the GOP shows no embarrassment at the sight of over 30 white male lawmakers arguing over whether to cut women’s breast cancer screening from the now-dead health care bill?

Can we all agree Defense Secretary James Mattis probably never thought he would spend most of his time cleaning up the damage Mr. Trump creates because he doesn’t understand how NATO works?

Can we all agree the release of Hosni Mubarek from an Egyptian prison hospital marks the official end of the Arab Spring in Egypt?

Can we all agree, for most Americans, the best news of the week might be the FCC’s decision to fight back against robocalls?

Can we all agree the State Department’s new extreme vetting process is just another way to enforce the ban on immigration and probably explains why they are in no hurry to appeal legal rulings stopping the President’s order?

Can we all agree it’s no surprise the Trump administration found that Mr. Trump was in full compliance with his government lease for the Trump Hotel in Washington?

Can we all agree everyone should have a Trump Chicken – even if the  artist never intended his artwork to mock Mr. Trump?

Can we all agree, even in London, the personal history of the lone attacker, has the same ring as those from the US, France and Belgium?

Can we all agree the factors that appear to be leading to premature deaths of white Americans have implications for every aspect of our way of life?

Can we all agree, allowing Interior Department employees to bring dogs to work, might help with the toxic atmosphere, but a change in policy would probably do more?

Can we all agree Mr. Trump’s interview with Time Magazine is extraordinary for it’s lies and lack of knowledge on so many subjects?

Can we all agree if you’ve lost the support of the Wall Street Journal’s editorial page, you can’t really be a conservative?

Can we all agree Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch will probably be confirmed, but the Democrats need to mount a filibuster just to object to the way Mr. Obama’s nominee was treated?

Can we all agree we know nothing more about Mr. Gorsuch  now, than we did when his hearings started?

Can we all agree it’s unbelievable that California has lead contamination levels higher than Flint, MI and no one seems to care?

Can we all agree North Korea leader Kim Jong-un apparently has a bright future as a bank robber?

Can we all agree Ivanka Trump has always been working in the government, now she will have an office? Setting up her company to make believe she is not running it, is just paperwork.

Can we all agree Mr. Trump’s low approval rating will continue to play a role in his inability to get Congress to go along with his legislative agenda?

Can we all agree everyone has a favorite Chuck Berry tune?

Can we all agree for many years,  if you really wanted to know the heart of a great city you needed too read columnists such as Jimmy Breslin, Mike Royko or Herb Caen?

and finally:

This week’s good news to restore your faith in humanity.

 

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CWAA: Can We All Agree – 2/4/17 edition

February 4, 2017

Can we all agree, after two weeks, our President’s act is already getting a bit old – someone disagrees with a policy, so you mock them on Twitter?

Can we all agree, Mr. Trump seems to believe you can treat world leaders the same way?

Can we all agree Mr. Trump doesn’t understand that his job is not a video game, people’s lives are changedbattles will be fought, people will die, because of his oversized ego?

The President's official portrait - would you trust him?

The President’s official portrait – would you trust him?

Can we all agree, someone needs to tell the President his hair growth drug is not working?

Can we all agree, it won’t take long for Republicans to tire of cleaning up the President’s messes? “Attention K-Mart shoppers: Cleanup on aisle 7…”

Can we all agree, even if the travel ban is overturned by the courts, it has forever damaged our reputation as a nation of immigrants?

Can we all agree when you manage to get Koch Industries and Silicon Valley on the same side of an issue, you must have really messed up?

Can we all agree Mr. Trump’s immigration ban is not making us safer because terrorists groups are just using it as a recruiting tool?

Can we all agree Mr. Trump can fire all the people he wants, but he will need career government workers on his side to effectively implement any of his policies?

Can we all agree the United States appears to have abandoned the Ukraine  and the rest of Europe is scared to death?

Can we all agree, Mr. Trump’s foreign policy decisions are undermining every international relationship we have, because even when he embraces a policy, he changes his mind in a few days?

Can we all agree Vladimir Putin’s visit to Europe this week was just a shopping trip to see what countries were available? And the Europeans know they are powerless to stop him without the United States?

Can we all agree it’s nice to see Mr. Obama and his wife enjoying their time away from the White House, but we would all prefer they come back…now?

Can we all agree the GOP may have accomplished their mission to destroy the Affordable Care Act, by reducing  confidence that it will continue to exist thereby decreasing enrollment?

Can we all agree it appears that some members of Congress have come to their senses and realized 23 million voters depend on the ACA?

Can we all agree, it would be nice to think, the nominee to be Secretary of the Army, was putting country above business, but his withdrawal was simple economics – he didn’t want to give the money he was making?

Can we all agree that eventually the GOP will approve a cabinet for the President but the process will reveal their own lack of  principles?

Can we all agree, Mr Trump has lied once again in saying that  his trust distances him from his business holdings?

Can we all agree Kelleyanne Conway’s ability to be an effective spokesperson for the administration was reduced to zero this week when she made up events to back up her lies?

Can we all agree the President seems to feel that fear is the best way to govern, because he has no other source of authority? But he is learning the hard way that leaks will undermine everything he tries to do.

Can we all agree he is sowing the seeds for an internal upheaval driven by violence and hate?

Can we all agree Mr. Trump doesn’t seem to understand why  American companies are backing away from dealing with him?

Can we all agree the effect of undoing the financial reforms of 2008 will be felt by average consumer, long after Mr. Trump has left office?

Can we all agree Mr. Trump’s speech at this week’s prayer breakfast was bizarre, even by his low standards?

Can we all agree the administration’s goal to allow non-profits and churches to espouse political views will be refreshing for the many minority churches who oppose him?

Can we all agree, despite what some voters think, the economy in the Obama administration was the strongest it has been in 20 years?

Can we all agree it’s unfortunate that politics has even invaded the Super Bowl?

Can we all agree Milo Yiannopoulos would have a meager audience without the violence he encourages?

Can we all agree he should be allowed to speak so people would understand how little he has to say? And by the way, those protestors at Berkeley (where I live) had nothing to do with the University of California.

16387876_1409637815795935_1832359828888147710_n.jpgCan we all agree Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch will probably win approval since a number of Democrats up for re-election are afraid to oppose him despite his mother’s incompetence and his far right background?

Can we all agree it would appear that San Francisco and Austin will be the battle ground for the sanctuary city movement to protect immigrants already in this country?

Can we all agree Mr. Trump doesn’t need to be religious, but he should understand the role religion plays in the lives of many people around the world?

Can we all agree a political hack like Stephen Bannon has no business being on the National Security Council, that’s why there is a law against it?

And finally, in case you missed it, youth football  is trying to take steps to make the sport safer, so that mothers will let their children play again.

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